Believe it or not, there are more networking organizations in Reno than bars. Okay, I made that up. However there are a ton of different organizations and I have attended most of the events in town. It’s hard to determine which events will meet your networking goals until you attend them and figure it out for yourself. To save you the time, I will provide a description of the primary events in town. You’re welcome.
WIN Breakfast, (Western Industrial Nevada:)
The Win Breakfast is held once a month in the Capri Ballroom at the Peppermill. To my knowledge that event is always held on a Friday morning at 7am and it’s a formal event, so you better wear a suit. At this event you eat breakfast and watch a keynote speaker. There are a lot of well known and respected business professionals at this event, but based on my experiences it’s unlikely you will have the opportunity to meet many of them. Most of the attendees at this event will already be engaged in conversations or sitting at their table. Working the room and meeting a large volume of people would be awkward, but it’s easy to meet everyone at your table. Cross your fingers that you sit at a good table. There are 2 ways to meet people at this event outside of your table: 1. Go with a well connected individual who can introduce you to everyone. 2. Bring a notepad and a pen. When individuals you would like to meet are introduced, write down their name and organization. Look them up when you get back to your office an email them. The cost for the event is $30 for non-members, $15 for members.
This is my favorite networking event in Reno. First of all, it’s free because various companies sponsor the event each month. The first 100 people through the door get a drink ticket and there are appetizers for everyone. The event is casual and meeting people is incredibly easy. People from every different profession under the sun attend, and the conversations you start are more real than at other events, perhaps because there’s always a bar close by at these events. Their website contains videos from prior events, as well as a list of upcoming events.
These events are similar to WIN Breakfasts in that they’re formal, and many important business personnel attend. In fact I would say EDAWN events attract the highest caliber of business professionals out of all the networking events in Reno. You may have to be a member to attend the events, and I’m able to attend them because my company International City Mortgage is a Gold Investor. As a Gold Investor, the costs is usually around $20 per person for the events. The events are held either at lunch or in the evening, and the nature of the events are pretty similar: There is time to network in the beginning, the main event consists of a presentation or speaker, there is usually food and drink involved and more networking opportunities exist after the events. Although you will often be seated at a table, these events are easier to meet people than the WIN breakfast. You can check out their schedule of events here. I attached a picture of an event I attended a few months ago:
Young Professional Network (YPN:)
I have only been to one YPN event so far, but I liked it and I intend on attending more in the future. The event I attended was very similar to Breakthrough in that there was food and drink, and the setting was casual. These events are known as “Raise the Bar Social Mixers.” It was easy to meet people and the crowd is younger since the YPN’s target market is professionals under 40. However the organization has a variety of committees that hold events related to their cause. You can learn more about this organization from their website.
Nevada Business Connection:
This is a brand new networking group that I’m on the events committee chair for. The purpose of the group will be to connect current MBA students at UNR with alumni and other working professionals in Reno. The events will be free and they will be casual. Our first event is being held this Friday, 3/14, at Sodo from 7-9pm. Sodo is providing 1 free drink and appetizers. A flyer can be located here, and I will attach a screen shot of the flyer below. This is exciting because this will be the first official networking platform for MBA students. In the future we may have guest speakers or workshops, but this it’s going to be a casual meet and greet.
1 Million Cups:
If you’re an entrepreneur who’s interested in meeting other like minded individuals in the community, this event is for you. Every event consists of a few presenters who share what they’re doing in the area. I have only been to 1/2 of 1 event because it isn’t related to my profession but I have been told the presentations and individuals are usually geared toward the tech world. This is a national organization and the event is held every Wednesday at 9am at Swill Coffee Shop in Reno.
There are a few other networking organizations I have participated in, such as PSN, BNI, L’uva Bella Wine Tasting and more. I will have to post about those at another time. There are also few I would like to attend such as Ignite Reno, and the Rotary Club, (first meeting tomorrow!) Are there any good networking organizations I missed and should be a part of? If so, please leave me a comment and let me know.
PSN, Iginte Reno, wine tasting, BNI, Rotary