21 January 2011

Instream management for your networking group

Don’t you just hate it ?
One of the very first blogs I have ever written was about the feelings I had when I had to attend events where I didn’t know any of the other guests.
When attending receptions and events outside of my usual networking groups, I still spot the same behavior I wrote about many years ago.
People are automatically drawn towards those they already know. Pick any event you want and each and every time you will see this same behavior happening again. People greeting each other and gathering in small groups of 4 to 6 people, neglecting the other guests of the event.

I still think this is an important issue to be addressed by organisers as well as steady members of a networking or business group.
As organisers or members we mustn’t forget that each year you have a natural outstream from your members group. Some people just got bored, others have moved away too far from the location, some people may have even passed away.

If you want your groups and events to stay successful in the future you need to pay enough attention to the instream of new members. In my opinion good instream management doesn’t stop by selling a membership card or a ticket to one of your events. Excellent instream management also means making sure that new members get integrated in the group(s). In the same way a moderator tries to engage conversations online, the hosts of any event should ensure that nobody stays aside during his or her first events.

This is the only way to ensure that new members will also stay for many years, becoming the new steady members of your group.

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