Networking opportunities have definitely changed over the past year, and virtual networking has been a primary solution during the pandemic. However, with many pockets of the country re-opening in 2021, more options are available for professional networking events. Through all of the changes, it's more important than ever for businesses/organizations to get creative in their connection opportunities. Arts-based events can provide really great ways to network in new ways and build relationships with stakeholders. Here are a few ways arts-based events can help:
1. Arts-based events can provide an inclusive space that gives employees equal opportunity to interact with upper management. Happy hours are typical ways for bosses or upper management to connect with employees, but this can exclude unavailable parents, those who don't drink, and/or those who aren't comfortable in bar settings. Providing some additional ways for employees and upper management/bosses to get to network can be beneficial to businesses/organizations.
2. Arts-based events can foster diversity by inviting participation from different cultures and backgrounds. Various art forms and artists can provide cultural insights and perspectives, which can support cooperation, creativity, and innovation.
3. Arts-based events can provide a neutral space outside work politics, etc. for people to build relationships. Work cultures can suffer from internal conflict around political, medical, economical, and social issues. Offering neutral spaces and projects can help people get to know each other outside belief systems and stances, and help your workforce remember they are a unified team.
4. Arts-based events can provide an inviting opportunity to network with people outside of your company and create new partnerships. They prompt interaction and dialogue starters, which can help when getting to know new people!
5. Arts-based provide ways to give back to your local community and artists and strengthen branding. They can help you promote your business/organization's name and link you to others who are doing creative and civic-oriented work.