Over the past few weeks I’ve attended some networking events that could not have been any more different (in a good way). The first one was a dribbble meet up that I only heard about by accident from an old coworker who offered to get me and my art director/friend Nikki into the already at capacity event. The setting of this event could not have been any better. A new building called the Willoughby with a rooftop terrace, cold drinks, and hot pizza. Talking and exchanging information with a lot of designers in all different fields and from various backgrounds was very interesting. We talked graphic design, UX/UI, photography, furniture design, etc. Rhyme & Reason put on an excellent event!
The Mavens from Mavenly.co (@mavenlyco) had their conference a few weekends ago and very much to my taste they organized a happy hour for people who had not signed up for their workshop. Nikki and I went and had a great time mingling with other professional ladies who are looking to become their own bosses. It was a great night for a bunch of women coming together, drinking wine, eating appetizers.
Sometimes I wish I would have started networking way earlier in my life. I’ve met some very interesting people and if there is one advice I can give a new designer, it is ‘go out and network’. In the beginning, Atlanta gave me a hard time getting acclimated and meeting people but in regards to networking, getting to know new people, starting conversations about doing business together, it has opened doors, and by doors I mean the biggest doors you can imagine.
One of the so far most successful networking sessions was the ‘Women, Work & Worth’ workshop where I met Charlene (@ceocharlene) who quickly got in touch with me and hired me to take headshots for people who had signed up at General Assembly for one of her workshops.
Social media plays a huge part as well, and if you really want to you can find some great social groups who plan happy hours and outings on a regular basis. When I first moved to Atlanta I learned about Six Degree Society. It was a bunch of women who came together, some with their own businesses already, others still moping around in their 9-5 (I was one of them and still am). Simply exchanging experiences, getting to know how people went about starting their own business, involving business coaches and what not, was very interesting and valuable input for me. Since then I’ve attended outings like that pretty often and have formed some great business relationships and friendships with some of these ladies.
So, young people, entrepreneurs, designers, and photographers, all I can say is ‘network, network, network’.