TOP
Attendees of Utah Business's Founder Friday Series converse before speaker Aaron Skonnard, co-founder and CEO of Pluralsight, at Kiln SLC in Salt Lake City on Friday, April 19, 2024.

The 7 best networking events in Utah

Attendees of Utah Business's Founder Friday Series converse before speaker Aaron Skonnard, co-founder and CEO of Pluralsight, at Kiln SLC in Salt Lake City on Friday, April 19, 2024.
Attendees of Utah Business's Founder Friday Series converse before speaker Aaron Skonnard, co-founder and CEO of Pluralsight, at Kiln SLC in Salt Lake City on Friday, April 19, 2024.

Whether you’re a seasoned professional, recently graduated or find yourself new to an area, networking makes or breaks your career. As the adage goes, “It’s not what you know — it’s who you know.” 

Here, we’ll explore the nuances of networking throughout different stages of your career and share a list of Utah’s can’t-miss networking events.

The importance of networking throughout all stages of your career

While some might assume that networking is only critical when starting a career, the truth is that it plays a crucial role in fostering growth and advancement throughout every stage.

In the early stages, networking is instrumental in building a strong foundation of professional relationships that can provide guidance, mentorship and opportunities for skill development. As your career progresses, networking becomes essential for expanding your sphere of influence, accessing new opportunities and staying ahead of industry trends. 

Mid-career networking is vital for exploring new paths, whether transitioning to a new role or industry or starting your own venture. Toward the end of your career journey, networking remains invaluable for maintaining connections, sharing wisdom and leaving a lasting legacy.

What’s most important is learning how to engage in career-long networking while avoiding burnout.

“When it comes to networking, I believe it should be something that re-energizes you and perhaps rekindles your faith in humanity a bit,” says Br33 Jon3s, founder and CEO of Gam3r Studios. “Going to every type of networking event will lead to burnout, so being very intentional about where and who you spend your time with is important.” 

Ultimately, networking at all stages of your career opens doors to professional opportunities and enriches your journey with diverse perspectives, support networks and lifelong learning opportunities.

How can you get started?

“Show up to meet someone new,” says Dr. Krista Andersen, founder and CEO of Fiksal. “Be bold and sit by a stranger. Introduce yourself and offer a genuine compliment. Networking can be transactional or connective. By choosing [to make it] connective, you will find opportunities for friendship, support, collaboration and new perspectives.”

Utah Tech Week Pitch Competition winner Jennie Moser (of Stagetime) and runner-up Luis Benavides (of Neighborbrite) stand onstage at Kiln with Utah Tech Week co-founder Trent Mano and pitch competition judges.
Utah Tech Week Pitch Competition winner Jennie Moser (of Stagetime) and runner-up Luis Benavides (of Neighborbrite) stand onstage at Kiln with Utah Tech Week co-founder Trent Mano and pitch competition judges.

Can’t-miss networking events in Utah

Be sure to check out some of our favorite networking events in Utah:

Founders N’ Funders: Founders N’ Funders events bring together entrepreneurs and potential investors to facilitate connections and opportunities. Stop by to hear pitches from startup founders seeking funding.

Silicon Slopes Summit: This two-day event brings together thousands of tech industry professionals, entrepreneurs and thought leaders for keynote speeches, workshops and networking opportunities.

Success in Education Events: These events are held by Utah’s Success in Education organization — a platform dedicated to improving educational outcomes and providing resources and support to students, educators and families across the state.

Third Thursday @ Three: During this event, five startups get five minutes each to pitch to Angel and VC Investors at Kiln HQ theater in Lehi before a Q&A and refreshments are served.

Utah Business’ Fast 50 event: Utah Business’ Fast 50 event recognizes and celebrates the fastest-growing companies in Utah based on percentage of growth over the last five years, offering a fantastic networking opportunity with the best of Utah’s business community.

Utah Business’ Founder Fridays: Every month, Utah Business hosts Founder Friday, an event sponsored by BONCO, Kiln and KaJae that showcases the wisdom of Utah-based founders.

Utah Tech Week: Utah Tech Week is an annual event dedicated to celebrating and promoting Utah’s thriving startup community. The week of events includes workshops, panels, keynote speeches and networking opportunities for tech industry professionals.