Come along, Wellington NGO webmasters networking event

Two colums of people facing each other at a speed dating event, by gsalokheI’ve promised to run the inaugural NGO webmasters networking event in a fast paced way. The exact words I’ve used in my promotional messages are “Snappy and fun – no sales pitches – no long speeches.”

I’ve attended many networking events and public meetings where things drag on. At worst, it’s half time before even half the people attending have introduced themselves. Recounting the number of hats being worn may be honest, but it quickly becomes tiresome. This is especially so when a honest bunch of people doing good works are present.

So, I’m going to muster some of the newer techniques to keep my promise. These seem to be largely a by-product of the speed dating phenomena.

I’ve yet to finalise my approach but I’m thinking of using a combination of the following techniques:

  • Business card swap and capturing web addresses on arrival
  • Rapid fire getting to know each other round, with pre-set questions such as website platform, part or full time, biggest challenges, number of web properties
  • Speedy prioritisation of issues on top, maybe including voting
  • Resource sharing in a flash
  • Pairing up with like-minded participants.

Of course the format that best suits the group who come will arise on the night. We’ll have about 90 minutes together including time to have a cuppa and some of my home baking.

If you have any particularly good suggestions for speed networking techniques, you could share your thoughts on this blog post.

At this stage I’m not making any assumptions about what will happen after this first event. For this reason, I’ve set up a simple wiki page to record who attends and any links or resources shared if people desire. It’s too early to imposed an online platforms designed to support networking events (eg MeetUp) as this suggests I know how the networking event will work out. I don’t. Making a decision on the technology to support any future networking is some time off (and depends on whether people want to have stuff recorded, and want to come back).

The networking event is open to all webmasters working for NGOs. There’s no charge to attend. So come along if you’re in Wellington on the day. I’m looking forward to meeting everyone who comes along and the korero.

Wellington NGO networking event details

Date: 5pm, for 5.15pm start, on Tuesday 15 November 2011
Venue: Conference room 1 (upstairs), St Andrews church, 30 The Terrace
Find out more and register

PS I decided to run this even after talking with people at the Connecting Up conferences earlier in the year (see my post “An informal, regular get together for Wellington nfp webmasters?”). After talking with a few people, I ran a poll to check with potential attendees how often they’d like to meet. The responses indicated each month would be about right. So, here goes.

Photo credit: gsalokhe

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5 thoughts on “Come along, Wellington NGO webmasters networking event

  1. Julian Apatu

    Firstly, thank you for taking the time and effort to organise this get-together.

    I think getting a feeling of how things are going to proceed would be a good idea before committing to anything.

    I also think that having a purpose (networking, sharing ideas, support network/whatever) would be a good start as it gives prospective attendees an idea of what this meetup can become (although just getting them to turn up in the first case with no set agenda is a good thing too.)

    I like the points you outlined above for ideas (networking, resource/link sharing, common issues, etc) and I am sure that these can be developed further on the night.

    See you tomorrow!

  2. David D

    Namaste guys

    Firstly, a big thank you to Stephen Blyth for holding th Webmasters forum. This was just what I needed!

    I’m sure everyone found it informative and helpful and not to mention a good opportunity to network with likeminded individuals. It address several points of interest to many that attended and the format..”See how it goes” was well placed for the first meeting.

    Secondly, as I mentioned on the night, I could’nt find a Worpdress support group in Wgtn so, how about we create one? I noticed there were several people that were involved in Worpdress through their jobs and it would be good to have a group that meets regularly to discuss WordPress issues.

    To have our very own WordPress group?
    This , of course , would depend on numbers so who would be interested in ‘signing up’ for such a group.

    It could be a CMS /Wordpress group that would address general CMS issues also but primarily a WordPress focus.

    If you could email me at by this Sunday 20th to let me know if your interested.


    1. Julian Apatu

      Hi David,

      I’d be interested in a CMS or WordPress group.

      Both your website links didn’t work for me either.

      I’d be keen to keep in contact with everyone, so please send me an e-mail if you need to discuss anything.

  3. Stephen Blyth Post author

    Thanks for the feedback… I enjoyed myself on Tuesday as the facilitator, which is always a good sign.

    I’m offering to facilitate further events in 2012, starting in February. Details out soon.

    About a WordPress meetup, I’m surprised there isn’t already a WordPress user group in Wellington. Maybe energy in this space used up after several WordCampNZ ( Anyway, best wishes with getting something underway.


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