How to develop your professional network in Riyadh

professional networking in Riyadh
Updated 2019-05-21 12:55

Being the Saudi capital city, Riyadh is a city of opportunities for expats looking to live and work there, but life can get tricky if you don't know anyone yet. Professional networking can be a real asset in getting things done, especially if you're looking for a job or to set up a business. Here's how to get started.

Online networks

Usually, expats register on LinkedIn to get some information about work, but it can also help you in looking for nearby job fairs, enlisting for expert meetups or events, or catching up with contacts from past gatherings. You will be surprised at how rapidly online networks like LinkedIn will enable you to interface with a substantial gathering of individuals on your arrival in Riyadh. You can also try Facebook and join professional or expat groups in Riyadh and stay updated regarding forthcoming events. It's also worth noting that recruiters very often use LinkedIn to look for candidates so it might be useful if you're looking to progress in your career.


Like most major cities in the Gulf region, Riyadh regularly hosts local and international events, conferences, job fairs seminars, exhibitions, etc. Attending these events will be an excellent opportunity to meet new people and, why not, potential business partners. Make sure to have your business card ready and to hand them over whenever needed. Also, remember to request business cards whenever you meet someone who, according to you, can turn out to be a useful contact in the future.

Foreign organisations

As mentioned in the article about Finding work in Riyadh, the city is home to many foreign organisations and diplomatic missions, many of which regularly organise professional events. Stay updated regarding these events, especially if you're looking for a job or to start a business in the city.


Simply being social is an extraordinary method to start building your professional network. You can begin by attending to meetups regularly or by joining a book club or a gym and then talk about those groups to the new people you meet. As you make new companions, you will additionally make new associations that you can add to your developing your professional network. International students, for example, can rely on their university alumni or clubs to expand their professional network.

Be proactive

You may know a hundred people in Riyadh and have collected a lot of business cards, but it's better to stay on their minds. Keep your contacts updated and try to help each other as far as possible. A phone call once in a while can change things. Just remind them that you're someone they met at a particular event and that you would like to stay in touch. Why not offer your help if you recall a particular issue they have been dealing with? Who knows, they might also call you back and offer you help if need be.

Useful links:

Mit Saudi

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