How to connect with new people without being a creeper
Last week I went to Atlanta to attend a conference. While I was there I wanted to connect with a friend of mine from Up With People and with some personal finance bloggers who live in Atlanta. I had never met them before and quite honestly they are pretty well known in the personal finance community and I am not. I’m a big believer in meeting new people but introducing yourself to new people can be tricky. You don’t want to come across as a creeper.
When I made my initial overture to the bloggers in Atlanta I really wasn’t sure what their response would be. I love meeting new people but I live in a town that is pretty easy to navigate. If people contact me it’s easy for me to meet them downtown, show them around, and get them back to our initial meeting place. Atlanta is huge, spread out and I had no idea where I was staying. Or, where I was in general. My thought was I had nothing to lose and they would either say “yes” or “no”. Fortunately for me, they said “yes!”
I hung out with Lauren from Lbee and the Money Tree, Paula from Afford Anything, and Kyle from Amateur Asset Allocator. They were welcoming, funny, and genuine. We hung out for several hours and I discovered that Lauren is HILARIOUS! Kyle is charming, and Paula is a real estate genius. I am really happy that I took the risk to met with them and am looking forward to meeting them again in the fall at FinCon13 (pf bloggers conference). In the 3 hours that we hung out I learned about the following: real estate-Paula changed the whole way I was thinking about investment properties, our time hanging out also reinforced my belief that pf bloggers rock and that it’s perfectly normal to pepper conversation with thoughts about assets, stats, and writing. Meeting with Lauren, Kyle, and Paula also reinforced my belief that there are great people out there wanting to make a connection and all it take is an email, tweet, call, or letter to get that connection started.
A couple of things to consider before you get started connecting with new people. First, I have been reading Lauren’s blog for quite awhile and she was who I contacted first. I also comment on her blog quite often so it wasn’t as random as you would think that I would ask to meet up. Second, I was also comfortable with the possibility of them saying “no”. They may have been busy or just uncomfortable meeting me. Finally, I didn’t send too many emails. That should be a no brainer. Obviously, too many emails is weird. Don’t do it.
- Take risks-contact people that you would like to know
- Make sure who you’re trying to meet has a sense of who you are
- Be gracious. I really, really, appreciated the time that Lauren, Kyle, and Paula took out of their day to meet me.
- Have fun!
- Keep in touch
**The link is our picture! Kyle is taking it. He is not shy***
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