Educational Happy Hour?

So the saying goes that it’s not always what you know, but who you know.

While one could argue the merits of this statement, one thing that rings true is how important it is to network and stay connected. Public relations/communications/media professionals and students, or anyone learning for better ways to network in their respective fields, I strongly urge you to mark your calendars for the PRSA-NCC event, Face-to-Face Meets Digital: How to Improve Your Networking Skills on May 24 at Hager Sharp in DC.

So what does that title mean exactly? Well, one thing that has always remained a constant is that networking remains vital when it comes to promoting oneself or developing business. However, what has changed is the avenues that professionals are using to network. With the advent of social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and personal and professional blogs, today’s professionals are able to communicate and connect with one another quickly and more easily in this digital world.

While some may argue this seems impersonal unlike the good ‘ol days of meeting people by word-of-mouth or cold calling, digital networking opens up a whole new world to the networker… finding others in their online network with similar career goals and paths ….and it often takes the fear out of it. And it is these digital introductions that now often lead to face-to-face interactions. I think we all can agree it is much easier to invite someone to connect on LinkedIn or join an online professional networking group to start a dialogue than it is to call someone up blindly.

Our three panelists — Heather Huhman, Founder and President of Come Recommended, Margie Newman, Founder of DC PR Flacks, and Dan Lyons, President of Lyons Public Relations and Founder of DC PR Lunch Crew — will share their personal experiences and offer advice on using social media for networking purposes.

Why should I attend you may ask? Well, our hard-working PRONet Committee decided to think outside the box and while we are proud of our Happy Hour events that we hold throughout the year, we wanted to offer something educational and on a subject that everyone can relate to and potentially benefit from — whether you are a student looking for a job, a veteran looking to generate more contacts or business, or someone looking to change fields.

And yes, I used the word “educational,” but that does not mean boring. The event will include a welcome speech by 2010 WWPR “Washington PR Woman of the Year” Debra Silimeo of Hager Sharp (who is so graciously hosting our event), a lively panel session followed by Q&A, and a reception with hors d’ouevres and drinks where attendees can practice their networking skills.

We hope you will join us for an evening of networking enlightenment and fun! Space is limited and online registration ends on May 20. Register here, http://bit.ly/iI2VaH.
—Sherry Perez
PRSA-NCC PRONet Chair

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