TLDR: Can networking take a refreshing turn? (Especially in the Buddhist world?) Salvi shares her experiences on how walking and talking without the usual formalities, fosters genuine connections on the move.
When we think of networking events, it’s often a mental slideshow of stiff suits, formal nods, and those awkward card exchanges.
But imagine if networking threw away the rulebook, embracing movement, fresh air, and an active spirit. That’s precisely what unfolded at a recent event—an innovative networking & walking session. At first, I was intrigued yet slightly skeptical about this dynamic approach to connecting.
The not-so-awkward session
Initially, the concept of networking on the move seemed akin to rubbing your belly while patting your head—daunting and perhaps a tad clumsy.
I envisioned a parade of professionals awkwardly navigating conversations, fearing stumbling—both verbally and literally. But the reality was far more exhilarating than I anticipated.
As we gathered at the starting point, anticipation mingled with skepticism. Could coherent conversations coexist with walking strides? Would I fumble my words? Who knows? But it was a challenge I was eager to embrace.
Walking & the lack of name cards.
The commencement of our networking journey felt like embarking on a quest for connections in a vibrant dimension.
Here, there were no static tables or uncomfortable glances—our canvas was the landscape, and our pace synchronized with the rhythm of our steps.
Conversations were a whirlwind of interactions, akin to a puzzle constantly rearranging itself. Groups formed and dissolved seamlessly, creating an environment where any corporate nomad would feel at home.
It dawned on me that this wasn’t just about superficial chitchat or exchanging “business cards” (since none of us had any). It was a moving fiesta of networking in its truest form!
Amid this whirlwind of connections, there was one conversation that stood out—a tête-à-tête about Buddhism within our group and their exposure to its different traditions in Singapore versus other countries was both eye-opening and comforting.
We delved into the nuances of Buddhism, discussing how in Singapore, with its rich cultural tapestry, the various traditions coexist harmoniously.
My conversation partners shared their journey of exploring different branches of Buddhism and the comforting realisation that it’s common not to know which specific tradition one identifies with, especially in a multicultural context like Singapore.
This dialogue illuminated the beauty of embracing diverse traditions and finding peace in shared experiences within a complex spiritual journey. It was a gentle reminder that in a world of multifaceted identities, it’s absolutely fine not to have all the answers.
During the stroll, I unexpectedly met a fellow countrywoman whose mother is in the same industry as me in a different country. It was a serendipitous moment—never did I imagine forming a new business connection while casually walking.
Treasure maps & Diversity
Reflecting on this unconventional networking experience, it was more than just polite exchanges; it was a space for sharing perspectives, learning from diverse experiences, and discovering common ground.This unique networking affair felt like uncovering a treasure map to genuine connections. It was beyond the mere exchange of contact details, evolving into a platform for sharing ideas, stories, and the occasional amusing anecdote—all while accumulating steps that would rival any Fitbit enthusiast’s count.
The End Comes Quick
The only downside was that the stroll ended too soon. However, with the evening still young, some of us extended the networking over dinner—a perfect conclusion to an enriching day.
Here’s to networking with a twist—where conversations walk, talks wander, and “business cards” change hands as naturally as the passing scenery. Who knew networking could be as liberating as a leisurely stroll in the park?
As I bid adieu to this innovative networking escapade, I couldn’t help but cherish the idea that connections, like life, flourish when you’re on the move—exploring, engaging, and occasionally evading a wayward pigeon or two.
Next time you gear up for a networking event, consider swapping the stuffy conference room for comfy sneakers. Who knows, amidst the twists and turns of a networking trail, you might stumble upon your next big idea.
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