JCI Networking Wednesday Experience

JCI Networking Wednesday Experience

Posted By admin |10 Feb 2014
JCI Networking Wednesday Experience

This year we are challenging all our members to Be Better. I caught up with Ryan Pilkington to see what that means for him...

I was on my way to an event that I've never been to before. Nervous, scared of being 'socially awkward', I kept clicking the pen in my hand. I have been a member of JCI Sheffield for a bit now and this was my first Networking Wednesday. Sure, they happen the last Wednesday of every month but I've never plucked up the courage to ever go myself, (little Mr no confidence speaking), but this time I went. Having no idea what to expect and worried I would probably be the one stood in the corner on my phone trying to look busy while everyone else talked and mingled!!! But no...

Walking into the warm lit room I found some familiar faces that made me feel more comfortable and more relaxed, (at least I knew some people there). After having a few minutes to compose myself I found myself talking to people I knew already, making small talk and thinking of how I could casually introduce myself to new faces without being rude. I thought to myself that this is some thing I need to Be Better at, be more confident and grow more personally and professionally. This was one of the steps. I needed to get over being shy and take a chance.

Blog » Social events » ryan pilkington photo (Jan14 Networking Wednesday Blog).jpg

So I did. I walked over to a familiar face and a new face and literally just said "I thought I'd come and say hi" without knowing how it would pan out. After a few minutes of chatting my nerves left and I felt a little more confident knowing that this mingling thing isn't as hard as I expected, still no professional at it by any means though, but you've got to start somewhere!  Casual and comfortable I made conversation with members of JCI Sheffield I already knew and some new people too each as friendly and welcoming as the last. With fun postcards telling people more about all the various aspects of JCI it felt like you really got an insight into what the organisation does and what it's about along with a talk about SAFE@LAST children's charity it also also made it for a good cause! With leaflets, desk pads and wristbands available you could easily do your part and help out!

When it got to near the end of the night I found myself more confident, comfortable and relaxed. Outside of my comfort zone and I liked it. I was going home feeling happy and I even got some free bagels! Made some new friends and caught up with others. JCI to me is something that pushes you outside your comfort zone, challenging you and making you Be Better because if it. I am definitely going to the next Networking Wednesday!

If you want to find out more about JCI Sheffield visit http://www.jcisheffield.org.uk or if you want to find out about SAFE@LAST visit http://www.safeatlast.org.uk 

Ryan Pilkington