Conference Networking Tips

As a top conference centre in Gauteng, we know that whether you run a large firm or a sole proprietorship, contacts with key people in your field are an integral part of helping you achieve your business or personal career goals.

There are many forums through which you can connect with these invaluable contacts, including conferences. However, the biggest problem that many of us face when it comes to conference networking is how to break the ice and make that first impression count.

Conference Networking – Making First Encounters Last

The first thing you have to be careful about when it comes to conference networking is to avoid the attraction of only focusing on the high profile attendees. Even though there is nothing wrong with seeking to exchange business cards with this category of conference attendees, exclusively focusing on this group has two major drawbacks.

First, there will be a lot of competition. Remember that if it is a conference in your area of business or employment, it is very likely that many other attendees would have interests that directly compete with yours. The last thing you need is to get lost in the crowd and not be able to seize the opportunity to make a lasting impression on any one person.

The second drawback for going for the high-status attendees is opportunity cost; you end up missing out on people that are not as high-profile, but who might just be the ones who can help you to get you that deal you need.

Another key conference networking habit you should practice is to resist the urge to grab your smartphone or tablet during conference breaks. We must admit that, thanks to the amazing level of connectivity we have today, we can keep in touch with the office from our mobile handsets, notebooks and other powerful portable devices.


However, pulling out your mobile phone to check your emails during breaks at the conference venue creates an impression of aloofness and of being unapproachable. Instead, take advantage of the coffee and lunch breaks to break the ice. In fact, it is more likely that the most effective and successful relationships you make during the conference are the people you meet during the meal-related breaks.

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Idle Winds is a conference venue that owes it’s success to the balance that we’ve achieved by being located in country surroundings while being less than half an hour away from South Africa’s business hubs of Pretoria, Sandton and Johannesburg.

Contact us today to find out more about what our conference centre in Gauteng has on offer!