Arrive Early / Stay Late
In order to maximize your networking investment, invest the time.
Be one of the first to arrive. This allows you to meet and help the event organizers out. Remember they brought all of these people together and they should have a fairly large network themself. The may start introducing you and allow you to tap into that network.
Offer to help out. Offering your services will place you in a new light for the organizer. As real estate guru Richard Robbins says, “Giving begins the receiving process. ”
Don’t be in a hurry to leave. Many people rush out of networking events to “get back to work”. Remember, if you are representing your company or organization, this is work. I have made many great connections while stacking chairs at the end events, that have later converted into business.