Networking. LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter. Never before have we had such accessibility to virtually connecting with someone. While digital media has improved our efficiency to connect with the masses, it cannot replace the power of a face-to-face encounter.
Most of the leaders I work with in children’s ministry are working so fast and furious making Sunday happen every week, that there is very little time to network. That’s one of the reasons why I encourage leaders to carve out time to attend The Orange Conference. It’s not just an opportunity to drink from a fire-hose of knowledge; it’s the perfect place to connect. I value these gatherings as an opportunity to be fully present and engage with people around me.
Not sure what to say to strangers? With a few strategic questions, you will quickly move beyond superficial pleasantries to conversations that will build you a team of trusted advisors.

What’s working well for you?
This is a great way to let your newfound friend share something exciting. Chances are pretty good that you’ll learn a lot about their passions and walk away from your conversations with lots of ideas to impact your world.

What problem are you currently trying to solve?
You might be trying to solve the same problem, have found a solution, or they might just help you solve your problem!

We should stay connected! What’s the best way to reach you?
Make a point to collect contact information and send a thank-you note to every person you encounter. You will stand out from the masses when you go the extra mile to honor your new friend.
At OC13, we have perfect opportunities for you to practice your new networking skills. For our curriculum partners, we have a “Meet and Greet” hosted by the Orange Specialist Team on Tuesday, April 23 from 7 to 9 p.m., during early registration. You can RSVP by selecting the Meet and Greet as a “breakout” selection in your Ticket Admin area after logging into your account at New this year, we also are hosting Networking Gatherings on Thursday evening, April 25, from 8:30 to 9:15 p.m. in the Arena.
The bottom line is, God has many divine encounters for you. Anticipate them and have a few questions in your back pocket to help you honor the experience and wisdom of those you meet. You’ll be glad you did!
We hope to see you in Atlanta!