A bell was rung at which time the two facing individuals traded business cards, introduced themselves and shared what they were looking for in a mentoring relationship.
At five minutes, the bell was rung again and one row of people moved two seats down. While they were not asked to rank their top choices, the idea was that if this exercise were repeated at a local chapter or in a large office, the interns could rank their mentor preferences.
In the Station-based model, participants meet each other individually based on a pre-assignment.Prior to coming to the event, participants fill out a questionnaire listing their business background (job title and industry) and whom they wish to meet (suppliers, customers or vendors).The two participants in each meeting introduce themselves, briefly summarizing their business histories and goals.They often exchange business cards and possibly additional information for a follow-up meeting.Participants greet each other in a series of brief exchanges during a set period of time.
During an interaction, participants share their professional backgrounds and business goals.Each table seats a specific number of participants, depending on attendance. Table assignments are often predetermined by computer software but other techniques can be used to determine the groups each attendee participates in.Each participant at the table takes a few minutes – the length of these introductions can also be set – to introduce him or herself.Networkers are generally seeking exposure to new markets and/or expanding their pool of vendors.Although the techniques for speed dating and speed networking can be similar – participants paired or grouped together for the purpose of introduction – the practices differ in their end goals.At the 2007 National AIA Convention, Kim and Waldrep co-presented a session entitled Speed Mentoring: Developing You, an Emerging Professional and over 100 attendees participated - representing the spectrum of interns to senior leadership.