Speed networking is a fun, fast-paced way to build business relationships.
But because you only get a few minutes, you need to make the most of them. There’s no time for fluff or unnecessary small talk.
To really get to know the person across from you, you need to ask the right questions. It’s key to maximizing conversations and creating meaningful connections.
Here are one-hundred actually interesting speed networking questions to help kick off conversations:
(If you’re an event planner, we also have tips + tricks for how to host a successful speed networking event.)
Job-specific speed networking questions:
- What does a typical day look like for you?
- What is your favorite—and least favorite—part of your job?
- What’s the biggest project you’re currently working on?
- What is the most challenging part of your job?
- How do you overcome those challenges?
- How long have you been working in this job?
- How long do you see yourself continuing to work in this job?
- What are you most proud of accomplishing?
- What is an example of a time you failed in this job?
- What did you learn from it?
- What would you change about this job if you could?
- Do you have any advice for someone who wants a similar job?
- What does the future of this job look like for you?
- What types of teams do you work with?
- How many people are a part of your team?
- Do you have a mentor at this job?
- How about a mentee?
- Is there any way I can help you land a similar job?
Company-specific speed networking questions:
- What does your company do?
- Where is the company located?
- Do they have more than one office?
- How many people work for your company?
- What is your favorite—and least favorite—part of your company?
- What kind of perks does your company offer?
- Have you met the CEO?
- What types of professional development opportunities does your company offer?
- What is the organizational structure like at your company?
- How would you describe your company’s culture?
- What advice would you give to management at your company?
- How does your company measure success?
- Is your company meeting its mission?
- What is the most unique thing about your company?
- What would you say to someone who wants to work for your company?
Career-specific speed networking questions:
- What made you choose this career?
- Did you always know you wanted this type of career?
- What sparked your initial interest?
- What is the most challenging part of your career?
- What is the most rewarding part of your career?
- Do you have any advice for people who want to follow a similar career path?
- What is the most helpful information you’ve learned in your career?
- What hard and soft skills help you succeed the most in your career?
- What do you wish you knew more about?
- Where do you see yourself five years from now?
- Where were you five years ago?
- How can I help you in your career?
Industry-specific speed networking questions:
- What does the outlook of this industry look like?
- Is it growing or shrinking?
- What industry-specific tools have you found most helpful?
- Are there any industry certifications that I should be aware of?
- What advice do you have for building connections within this industry?
- Have you attended any industry conferences?
- And if so, what did you learn?
- What is the best way to break into this industry?
- What hurdles is this industry currently facing?
- How has technology affected the way this industry works?
- What is the best way to stay in the know about industry happenings?
- What is the biggest change this industry is undergoing?
- How can I help you in the industry?
Productivity-specific speed networking questions:
- How do you stay organized?
- What tools or software do you use to increase your productivity?
- Do you use a project management software?
- What kind of communication platforms do you use? Email, Slack, instant messaging, etc.
- Do you have any routines that have helped increase your productivity?
- How do you decide which tasks to tackle first?
- Do you make a to-do list every day?
- If so, how do you organize it?
- What’s the best advice you received that has helped you be more productive?
How-to-get-hired speed networking questions:
- What do you look for in a candidate?
- What should I include in my resume?
- What shouldn’t I include?
- Are there specific skills that need to be on my resume?
- Do I need an online portfolio?
- What can I do to set myself apart from other candidates?
- What do you look for in a cover letter?
- What interview tips do you have?
- What is the biggest mistake candidates make in the hiring process?
- What questions should I ask in an interview?
- What do you think is more important: previous experience or a willingness to learn?
- How should I follow up after an interview? With a hand-written note or an email?
- Is there anything I can do to help you get hired?
Event-specific speed networking questions:
- What brought you to this event?
- What are you hoping to take away from it?
- Are there any specific people—or types of people—you’re hoping to meet?
- Have you attended a speed networking event before? How did it go? What did you learn?
- Do you have any speed networking tips?
- How can I help you meet your networking goals at this event?
- Is there anyone here I can introduce you to here?
- Is there anyone in my network I can introduce you to?
It’s important to remember that networking isn’t just about you. It’s important to ask the questions you need answers to, but don’t forget to ask how you can help too.
Here are some helpful networking tips + tricks.
You should focus on long-lasting relationships, not short-term transactions.
Networking is really just a fancy word for relationship building. Care about who people are—not just what they can do for you.
Remember that you must give before you get. There needs to be cultivation before solicitation. Sell through the room, not to the room.
And never underestimate the importance of a thoughtful thank-you note. Your follow-up is just as important as your first impression.
So, there you have it. Speed networking questions that are actually interesting.
If you’re one of the many people who dread networking, just remember to stay curious. Ask questions you actually want to know the answer to. Be your authentic self so you don’t feel phony or fake.
If you’re interested in hosting a speed networking event, we’d love to help. Not only do we have years of experience under our belt, but we also have a special technology up our sleeve.
Allow us to introduce you to the idea of matching software. Rather than having attendees rotate each round to the next chair, we match based on mutual interests.
Attendees can quite literally pre-select the types of people they’re interested in meeting. Need we say more?
To learn more about us (and our technology), give us a call or schedule an online demo. We’d love to learn more about your organization and networking needs.