I know that people advise not to,
but I usually peg off the singles first.
I think its a nice thing to do.
Then I'll fold in a passing person to the conversation.
Once those two are talking,
I'll usually move on.
However, if you're not good at roping in passing people into a conversation,
you might want to target larger groups.
Buddies do things like picking a color
and talking to everyone with that color, etc
Random is better.
Oh, and I always think of myself as a host first.
Its the host's job to ensure that everyone is talking.
Takes the focus away from me.
Another thing I believe is: take yourself lightly. When we go to these things, to many people are standing around with their guard up, afraid to be the first one to say hello. It does not make you more powerful or a better business person for people to be afraid to approach you. Quite the opposite, if you do the approaching you assume the dominate role, once you do this if you are kind & easy going you are showing you have nothing to defend, you are sure of your position. Usually when we go to a networking mixer we have already sat through several seminars with the same people. I try to notice which people ask questions that interest me to be able to speak with them latter. I also try to notice who doesn't talk at all so I can approach them and try to bring them out. As a woman I also try to notice the guy's that you can tell think they are ladies men and avoid them completely.