I get intro’d to a lot of people. I also get cold-contacted by a lot of people. I don’t really mind it, in fact I consider meeting new people a perk of being involved in the startup community.
Back in the day when the community was much smaller, new people I’d meet usually knew someone I knew – which made things really simple. Now, with the amount of activity in the space, this is the exception rather than the rule.
There are lots of suggestions for the right way to do intros (my general rule is that if we haven’t had a laugh together I’d prefer you to ask me first before introing me to others)
Either way, if you’ve been intro’d to me (or if I’ve intro’d you to someone else for that matter) do me a favour and and least make me feel like you value my time and friends.
Normally that means offering to come out to see me or the person you’ve been intro’d to first (rather than expecting me/them to come to you), not asking me/them to do intros to others if I/they have never met you before and trying, where possible, to add value first before asking for it.
That’s not me being snobby in a startup industry way. It’s me explaining how I’ve gone about meeting people in the community over the years and still do today. I also think it’s just what you should do if you’re being courteous. Take me out of the startup community and I’d do exactly the same thing.
The openness and willingness of people to help is one of the best things about the startup community both here and overseas. Getting the most out of that only takes a little effort.