Speed Dating, whoops Networking, a hit!

Posted: 24th October 2016

Philippa Gratton Photo

By: Philippa Gratton

Lucy Morgan, Penny Gibbings and myself sat in trepidation on the morning of Friday 28th October, in the Royal Oak at Brandon. Would anyone come? Would we look ridiculous? Would we be left with egg on our faces? If so, we would blame Lucy as it was her idea! Yes, we had advertised our meeting that month as Speed Dating: networking with a twist!

Coffee and tea were brewing, the room was arranged accordingly and delicious cake was waiting for the break …………………….

Wow, what a surprise – as the clock struck 9:30, the doors opened and sixteen ladies piled in; they were chatting, excited and full of enthusiasm! Lucy had provided me with a bell and after much debate clarifying the rules, the ladies were set to go, and go they did as soon as that bell was rung (by me of course!).

Each person was given two and a half minutes to talk and their opposite partner had the same; after the five minutes were up, designated ladies had to move on t0 the next table. To indicate when each person’s time was up I would ring the bell, and ring the bell, and ring the bell (no-one was listening as they were so involved in their conversations!).

At 10:45, utterly exhausted, I rang the bell for the final time as the smell of coffee and lemon drizzle cake had reached my nostrils. “Stop” I managed to shout above the glorious din and our first Speed Networking session came to an end leaving plenty of time for refreshments, news and event information.

“Are you going to repeat this in the New Year?” came the cry from a number of animated ladies. You bet. It was a resounding success and new prospective members were hastily putting our next meeting date in their diaries. Heaven knows what our Christmas session is going to be like if we add prosecco to the mix!

 

Philippa Gratton

Chair of Coventry & Warwickshire WiRE