The Shy Person's Guide to Surviving Networking Events

The Shy Person's Guide to Surviving Networking Events

Ever feel like you're the only one who gets nervous at big events? Well, guess what? You're not alone! In a room full of 100 people, at least 30% of these people are shy. But that doesn't mean you can't make amazing connections at these events!

Here Are Some Simple Tips To Help You Network Like A Pro, Even If You Are Shy

Set a Goal:

To make the most of networking events and not get carried away by the good ambiance, program or food, you need to set specific goals and have a plan for achieving them.

Some of those goals can include:

  • Expanding your professional network

  • Finding new opportunities

  • Learning from experts

  • Getting a job referral

  • Finding collaborators for a project

Focus on Quality Connections, Not Quantity

Don't feel like you need to chat with everyone at the event! It's perfectly fine to be selective. Before you go, identify a few specific people you'd like to meet. This should be individuals who align with your goals and interests. By focusing your energy on these targeted connections, you'll be more prepared and leave a lasting impression. To do this, you can:

  • Check the list of speakers, partners, and sponsors.

  • Pick a few people you'd like to meet.

  • Research them beforehand (Use Google, LinkedIn, Twitter etc.) to find common grounds that can serve as a great conversation starter.

Prepare Your Lines:

You just don't want to say Hi and go blank, so it would be better to practice some introductory lines to avoid awkward silences.

  • Briefly introduce yourself and your interests in their work.

  • Ask questions to show your interest in them.

  • Exchange contact information.


"Hi Sarah, my name is Oyin. I'm a huge admirer of your work in building developer communities. Your approach to engaging developers and fostering collaboration is truly inspiring.

Sarah would most likely say, "Thank you" (But don't stop)

Throw in your pre-prepared questions, and engage [your connection] in a stimulating conversation.

  • Ask about their latest projects [that you found online] and have a genuine interest in.

  • Challenges faced in [the project] and

  • Strategies for success they could recommend.

By doing that, you've been able to create a lasting impression on the person and you can now exchange contact information to stay connected.

Dress to Standout:

The best quote I got from someone is:

If you can't walk up to them... Make Them Walk Up To You! (it can be as simple as, using unique Jewellery, Scent or Wearing a Beautiful Attire)

  • Stand out from the crowd with your outfit or accessories.

  • Use them as conversation starters.

For example: When someone compliments your outfit, accept the compliment and use that as an opportunity to introduce yourself and ask about them.

Bring A Friend:

You should consider going with a friend you feel comfortable talking to, that way you would ease into the atmosphere and the anxiety of networking would be greatly reduced. However, don't just stick with your friend throughout, remember to branch out and meet others.

Extra Tips:

  • Take pictures with your new connections and tag them online.

  • Don't just focus on high-profile people, chat with other attendees too.

  • Remember, everyone is networking, so don't be afraid to approach people.


Being shy doesn't have to hold you back! In fact, it can be your secret weapon for deeper and more meaningful connections. Remember these tips the next time you're at an event, and let me hear about your success stories!

Thank you for reading! You're the real MVP 🧡

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