One of my takeaways from Chic Geek's geeky summit last year was to commit to acts of micro bravery each day. One of these acts included starting a Meetup group for other women in business when I had never attended a Meetup before in my life.
How do you start a Meetup? What do you do when people actually come? I decided to figure it out. At one of my first Meetups only one other person showed up - everyone else cancelled at the last minute! It felt like we were on a blind date at first, but we ended up having a great conversation!
I’m glad I chose the path of bravery because since starting the Meetup I’ve connected with incredible women over the last few months. I call my Meetup, the new networking because it’s unlike any other networking event I’ve been to in the past (and I’ve been to a LOT!).
We begin each dinner by introducing ourselves and our businesses. We tell each other about a recent success we’ve had in our business, and then explain a challenge we’re having. When we get to the last part it gets really interesting! Some great ideas and solutions are voiced. Often times, one woman had the same problem in the past and can share what she did to overcome it. Other times, we hear about what’s worked in one industry that can be tried in another. In between all this business talk we get to know each other personally and have some laughs.
In my business I hear from so many people that they’re afraid of and even hate networking events. I believe you CAN overcome your fear of traditional networking, but maybe you’ll never truly enjoy it. These dinners offer a twist on networking and people seem to like it. There’s a general agenda and everyone gets a chance to speak – which puts people at ease. We’re talking micro bravery here :)
Last month's Meetup was at capacity and a fantastic group of women came together. I won't be at the May Meetup (because I’ll have just had a baby) but I’ve asked another group member to lead the discussion.
I have a lot to learn when it comes to the Meetup platform, but I know I leave each Meetup dinner happier than when I arrived, so I'll take that as a good sign! I’m planning another Meetup for June that I plan to attend. I can't wait to break bread (or have pizza) with 10 other female entrepreneurs to cheer them on and help support their business.
Want to join the Meetup group and attend a future dinner? You can sign join the group and then RSVP to attend our events here.
PSSSSST: The next Meetup is May 15 so join and RSVP soon!