I’ve never been a fan of networking – I’m not really one for small talk, and it just seems like too much of a hassle meeting and interacting with new people just for the sake of expanding your contact base.
So when I went to the York alumni reception tonight, I wasn’t really expecting to meet anyone new. I was rather prepared to just stick with the people I knew and enjoy the free food, but somehow I ended up talking to some people I didn’t previously know, and actually found it to be a rather pleasant experience! I guess it helped that so many people I talked to were educators, present and future ones. They were also all rather chatty, so there weren’t any awkward pauses or anything. Perhaps that was because we didn’t really talk for all that long, but I also imagine that the sort of people who would go to an alumni reception would be more eager to converse.
I also met one of the current deputy headmasters of RI (where I’m hoping to go back and teach at). I chatted with him briefly, and it was interesting to see someone so eager and genki about the education scene, even after rising up the ranks. He’s not even that much older than me, actually, maybe 8-10 years my senior? Hopefully I’ll still be that enthusiastic about the service then!
So I guess this is the most career-relevant instance of networking I’ve achieved, and it’d happened quite completely by accident, as well as rather painlessly! I’m actually rather rather hopeful for a proper York alumni with the occassional meetup, suddenly meeting other alumni from different batches doesn’t seem such a painful thing anymore…