4 Tricks For Throwing A Great Networking Event

networking event

If you are a millennial living in a large city in Canada – be it Calgary, Vancouver or Toronto – chances are you work in a fast paced environment where networking, meeting people and staying dynamic are all top priorities. In the burgeoning creative fields like design, tech and communications, contract work is quite common and often individuals are focused on upward mobility, so that jumping from one company to then next in search of that elusive dream job is not unusual.

While social networking sites like Facebook and LinkedIn are great for networking online, nothing beats good old-fashioned face to face schmoozing. If you are part of a young start-up or not-for-profit trying to get its feet off the ground, throwing a networking event is a great way to open up your community and increase the profile of your company. While this may sound like a lot to take on, it’s actually not that complicated if you employ a few choice tricks.


Certainly one of the most important factors for your networking event is going to be the venue. Most startups don’t exactly have lavish brick and mortar facilities to host a party, nor would you necessarily want party-goers hovering over the workstations gripping cocktails precariously, so you’ll probably want to outsource the venue. If you live in Toronto and work with a socially progressive company, then the Center for Social Innovation could be a good option, they have reasonable event space rental fees and gorgeous facilities. In Vancouver there are lots of converted warehouses and historical buildings that serve as event spaces. The Permanent, for example, is named after the BC Permanent and Loan Company that occupied this historic building over a century ago.

Hire a Bartender with Flare:

Obviously, competent bar staff is going to be necessary to pull off your event, but don’t just settle for competent. As these types of events become more and more popular, the bar catering game has grown increasingly competitive. Therefore, if you shop around, you should be able to find a company that can supply charismatic, highly skilled individuals who can serve up custom cocktails, fine wines and delicious craft beer all night long. There are so many reasons why you should hire a bartender who goes above and beyond, rather than just your average, run of the mill caterer who doesn’t know their cabernet sauvignon from their pinot noir.

Provide a Check-in Area:

There’s nothing worse than a pushy host who insists on collecting every last email from every last individual on the premises, however, it’s good to have a visible check-in zone where people can write down their email addresses and whip up a name tag. After all, these people are here to make connections, give them the resources they need!

Talk to as Many People as Possible:

Take a nap, drink some coffee, go easy on the booze, whatever you need to do to keep your energy levels up and have clear, memorable conversations with as many people as possible. The event should be fun, but if you sunk this much time and energy into the event, you damn well better have some connections to show at the end of it all. The temptation can be to drink hard to relieve the stress of pulling off the event, but this is a rookie mistake. Stay clear headed, and make sure that everything runs smoothly.