Meeting new people & networking in Hong Kong
Networking in Hong Kong comes to most people like second nature and making new friends and business contacts should not be a problem even for the shyest creatures amongst us.
The compactness of the city is one of its greatest advantages and while it is the norm to complain about the fact that we all live on top of each other (literally), it makes meeting new people in Hong Kong so much easier. The other factor that pushes most people to be more open to new acquaintances is that most expats in Hong Kong moved here without knowing anyone, so do not have the long established network of colleagues, friends and family to rely on.
Most of us are here due to work related matters so the obvious first circle of acquaintances we make are colleagues. For some this might be a good choice, but after a while it might feel a little too tight and new interests are sought out. On the other hand, some might be looking to expand their professional network.
While some might define after-work drinks in Soho as a professional networking evening, there are actually many structured, well organised, professional networking opportunities in Hong Kong.
The starting point for many is through their chosen profession or nationality, and shortly after moving to Hong Kong most expats will join a Chambers of Commerce or professional associations.
Some important things to consider before joining any networking group are:
– How many events do they host, and how many are of interest to you?
– How big is their network?
– What is their key language? Just because their website is in English this does not always mean that is the main language spoken by their members.
– What are their fees?
– If you are a consultant or self employed, does that group allow self promotion and will you meet potential clients?
In Hong Kong there are various social and professional networking opportunities and they are not mutually exclusive, so building up a diverse group of friends and business contact should be easy.