Please make me feel better about fleeing a networking event
Ncforthis003 · 15/02/2023 15:03
I just attended a really excellent panel on a topic relevant to my role. The panellists were amazing and the room was packed with people who are specific to my industry and would probably be interesting and useful to meet.
When the panel finished the moderator said “please take this half hour to network, get to know a few people and add them to your LinkedIn!” I was filled with immediate dread. So I waited for a few people to leave so I wasn’t literally the first person to walk out the door, and then fled.
My last impression was of the lady who did my name badge watching me scarper with a mix of dismay/disappointment.
I’ve had a death in the family this week and just have nothing in the tank to introduce myself to strangers or stand awkwardly in the middle of the room. But now I feel like I’m clearly missing a core feature needed to be a successful person or have a good career and I’m spiralling about it.
Do I suck or is it possible to be a success and avoid networking events?
Do you have strategies of fighting the fear and doing it anyway?
EmbraWumman · 15/02/2023 15:05
You're fine! If you feel you need to, drop them an email saying childcare/caring responsibilities. We all have days like this. Be kind to yourself, you're having a tough time.
DustyDoorframes · 15/02/2023 15:14
Oh blimey, you’ve just been bereaved, you’re allowed not to be on top networking form!! There will be other panels/gatherings/conferences. (And re strategies… look round the room and find someone who looks more terrified than you. Start with them! But also. It’s not compulsory)
Goodread1 · 15/02/2023 15:23
I think and I know a lot of other people think you have done amazing just even considering let alone attending a work related event like this ,especially amongst mostly strangers ,
I think you are expecting too much of yourself, putting yourself under too much stress,pressure considering you have been so much recently with bereavement,
Goodread1 · 15/02/2023 15:25
Take care of yourself X
Such as Take time to pamper yourself Holistic Therapies for e.g hot stone massage ect
Healthspa stuff too
mynameiscalypso · 15/02/2023 15:41
I'd have done the same as you, probably looking at my phone and pretending I had an urgent email or call. I don't mind talking to people in a structured way but networking, nope. That said, if we're ever at the same event do feel free to say hello and we can be awkward together! You've had a tough time recently, be kind to yourself.
CaptainCorellisXylophone · 15/02/2023 16:07
I hate networking things to the core of my soul, so YANBU.
That said, there's always the odd occasion where you meet someone genuinely interesting to talk to, you just never know if today is that day.
Biscuitlover456 · 15/02/2023 20:53
Sorry for your loss - I think considering the context you’re being tough on yourself. Now probably isn’t the right time to be contending with a roomful of strangers.
When you’re feeling more like tackling this sort of thing, what helps me is to 1) give yourself a time limit for staying there, 2) find someone who looks friendly and start there, and 3) ask people questions! It’s tempting to think everyone else absolutely thrives at these kinds of events but usually a lot of people dread them and will just be relieved to speak to someone nice who is interested in what they have to say :-)
Tinkeytonkoldfruit · 15/02/2023 21:03
I'd totally would do the same as @mynameiscalypso . I'd would have looked at my phone tutted, what a shame, emergency in office need to respond. Fake call and scarper. Can't think of anything bloody worse than forced networking. Eeeuegh.
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