Since joining the insurance industry, Carly and Tony have been to tons of industry events. CPCU Society local and national meetings, RIMS meetings, and Big I events to name but a few. Many connections have come out of remaining active in those groups, and here is one tip that you might not have heard before: to maximize your chances of making a few good connections during any industry event, try to be there 45 minutes before the official start time.
If there’s nobody there, you can always catch up on reading InsNerds.com or the Insurance Journal, but chances are the organizers and speakers will be there, and they will come over and greet you giving you a chance to connect with them. Do your homework ahead of time. Make sure you read their LinkedIn profiles, so you can easily get them into an interesting conversation, and you are bound to leave with their business cards in hand.
Everyone showing up just before the event starts will make a few connections, but with proper planning and being the early bird, you can make sure you maximize the connections you make from the event. It also helps to keep your calendar open for after the event in case there’s an opportunity to catch a happy hour, and further strengthen those connections. You truly never know what might come out of simply putting yourself out there, and showing enough interest to be there early.