Last week, more than 100 attorneys and other legal professionals congregated at the New York City Bar Association for its first Speed Networking event. Much like speed dating, speed networking matches participants with the types of individuals they most want to meet based on profiles filled out before the event, and then gives them six minutes to make connections that will hopefully last much longer.
Dave Delinko of Speednetworking.com was on hand as the evening's emcee, announcing when each meeting had reached its halfway point and when it was time to rotate. Delinko also provided some conversational pointers, like remembering to let your networking partner have a turn to speak (always a good reminder). He also encouraged participants to focus on the positive-even one great contact should be considered a success. After the speed rounds, the mingling continued at a networking reception, where attendees could continue conversations with their matches or meet new contacts in a less structured setting.
So what was the final verdict on the night's success? Jill Paul, an attorney with human rights and international law experience, is seeking to transition to a role in commercial litigation and hoped to make some new contacts in the field. She said she met several practitioners in her area of interest, as well as fellow job seekers with whom she was able to share resources and advice.
Ross Kartez, a 3L at St. John's University, said he found the cocktail reception to be especially productive. Ross, who is interested in dispute resolution and litigation, spoke with two different mediators who gave him advice about pursuing a career in ADR. One new contact even invited Ross to observe him in a mediation session.
Overall, the evening was an excellent opportunity to make new contacts, practice networking techniques, and socialize with colleagues. If you missed out on this year's event, don't worry-the NYC Bar Association is planning a repeat.
Rachel Marx is Vault's law editor. She covers legal news and trends relating to top law firms, law schools, and the general legal industry. Rachel holds a JD from Harvard Law School and a BA from Tufts University. She previously worked as a litigation associate at a large New York law firm.
Vault.com is the source of employer and education ratings, rankings and insight for highly credentialed, in-demand candidates. Vault's editorial mission is to empower candidates with unbiased research needed to evaluate the professions, industries and companies they aspire to join.
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