Networking is a great tool for making new contacts and spreading the word about yourself or your company. Once reserved for trade shows or meet-and-great cocktail parties, networking is taking on a new face: the Power Lunch. According to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal, the idea is spreading in Silicon Valley. Around two years ago a small group of Google employees began meeting at corporate cafeterias around the San Francisco Bay area in an effort to rub elbows with employees at other technology companies. According to the article, they posted their lunch schedule on a blog and opened the meetings to anyone interested. Now called Lunch 2.0, the power lunches have become a social-networking phenomenon, drawing hundreds of engineers, venture capitalists to various companies for free lunches and meet-and-greets.
The main purpose of the events is to meet other people in the business and push products to the influential blog community. And employees aren’t the only ones jumping on the bandwagon – big companies like Microsoft and Facebook have hosted Lunch 2.0 events as an innovative way of recruiting new employees under the guise of a networking event. In fact, a recent lunch at AOL drew a crowd of 200.
That’s it folks, it’s time to start power lunching because it appears to be the next big trend. Originally located exclusively in San Francisco, Lunch 2.0 has quickly spread to Seattle, New York and Atlanta, and that’s not all. The concept is even spreading abroad – groups similar to Lunch 2.0 have started events in Singapore and Bangalore! How’s that for viral marketing?