I’ve only gone and done it.
I’ve joined not one, but two, networking groups!
I joined 4Networking a couple of months ago now. Our nearest group is in the next town, assuming our bathroom and wetroom business grows as we hope it will, that will be our next area. So it’s a good place to make contacts.
4Networking is a network across the UK of business professionals, every meeting involves a speaker and everyone then gets three 10-minute one-to-one’s with other members. Once you join you can visit other groups and it’s all quite gentle, friendly getting-together and promoting.
And then … this week I joined the BNI! (Business Network International).
So the BNI is 4Networking on steroids, basically. Only one of each profession is allowed to be a member of each group, or chapter, and then all the members work to help each other by gathering referrals as they go along.
It’s pretty hardcore, and I’m a little nervous.
But I think it’s pretty crucial for the business and also for me as an individual.
Because I’ve never had what I would call a ‘real job’ and never had to work to targets or similar, I know that one of my weakest areas is in pure hard selling. And I’m pretty sure the BNI will help me improve on that.
I’ve signed up for a year. One morning each week I will meet the rest of my chapter at 6.30am for breakfast and networking, and I’ll give them the details of the potential clients I’ve found for them. And the clients I get from them I will have to ensure we act on and do the best job possible.
It’s all slightly scary! But here’s to the future – the future’s bright, the future’s BNI!