In late March, HDIF hosted their innovation week like they do every other year. There were so many innovators, partners, seminars and many more. Lot’s of topics were discussed from Education, Technology, Social during the innovation week and finally came the exhibition day that was held on the last day of the innovation week, whereby so many exhibitors presented their products, services and their solutions to the public.
People asked questions, bought some of the products that were sold, took pictures and others posted their experiences in their social media platforms like Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. But one thing I came to notice during the innovation week and other events that I normally attend is that our country does not usually capitalize networking as means to learn, meet and share ideas with other individuals, and maybe others do not even know the meaning and importance of networking. People are too much afraid to point out their views a particular discussion and sometimes the number of people who attend these events are very low.
Networking event is always a beneficial way to get people to come together and form professional and personal bonds. Networking event is a great place to meet a lot of like-minded people at one time, in networking event you never know whom you’re talking to, and sometimes our assumptions are wrong, so many universities overseas encourage their students to visit networking events with their CV’s in hand because during a discussion with someone, they might get an internship offer or even a job offer.
Most universities overseas are striving to make students understand and see networking event as a mock interview place where they can practice and gain confidence in engaging a conversation with someone. These are the benefits you get when you attend business networking events;
- Build a Business Relationship: Networking is part of a long-term strategy; it’s about creating, building and nurturing relationships that will lead to strategic referrals, alliances, and joint ventures. You get a chance to build relationships with different businesses you meet at events, these relationships would later create partnerships. New business relationships start very nicely at business networking events.
- Being Up-to-date to new Trends: Attending networking events hosted by a certain company or business allows you to gain insight on new current and future innovations, products and services that they have launched or will be launched, the prices and how they will be distributed on the market not only that but also challenges and potential solutions they have or will face before the launch.
- To Connect With Key Influencers: It’s not every day you get a chance to meet CEO’s or big shots in a certain company, if you’re looking for a job or have a good business idea a networking event that their company is hosting is the best chance to talk to them without scheduling an appointment, you can easily provide your ideas, introduce yourself to them and even exchange business cards for future discussion.
Innovation week is a very good example of an event that university, start-up businesses and entrepreneurs should be capitalizing on. But sadly they are not, the event is free with good educational discussions and new innovation, this is an event that runs only for a week but can provide beneficial advantages if only we would know and understand the importance of it. It is time we educate and innovate the next generations and ourselves on the importance of networking events.