It’s Summer and with the season comes trips to the beach, backyard BBQs, perhaps some travel or at least a “staycation.” Covid hasn’t disappeared, but with vaccinations and a dramatic reduction in new cases, many people have also resumed in-person networking.
Getting “back to normal” isn’t easy. It’s been 14 months since we were told to stay home and restrict our contact with anyone, even close friends and family. Learning that we can once again meet with people not only outside, but in an office or restaurant too, may prompt a certain amount of stress for many people who find that “re-entry” is difficult.
Regardless of how you feel personally, I believe that the best strategy is respect everyone’s comfort level and allow them to move forward at their own pace.
Are YOU ready for in-person networking? Here are some things to think about when considering your willingness to do in-person networking. Are any of these “deal-breakers”:
Do you have personal preferences about the number of people attending the meeting or is the number irrelevant?
Would you be willing to meet with people who have not been vaccinated? Would you want proof of vaccination, such as with the Excelsior Pass? (Reference).
Would you be more inclined to meet outdoors rather than indoors, or are you comfortable with both options?
Do you feel that in-person networking is superior to Zoom and are you eager to return to the “way things were before” the pandemic?
Carefully evaluate the situation before you commit to anything. It’s important to feel comfortable so that the event or meeting can be as pleasant and productive as possible.
We’ve all been through a lot, it’s not necessary to rush things if you’re not ready.
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