Networking at BNI?!?

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Networking at BNI?!?

Networking: Some of us like it, others LOVE it, and for some, it’s a necessary evil.

So, why bother? Because it will help us achieve our goals. Or perhaps I should say, it can if you do it well.

As we all know, BNI is a wonderful place to network.

Or is it?

Depending on how long you’ve been a member, you may realize that a BNI meeting is an opportunity to “educate” vs. “network”.  BNI is NOT the time or place to “sell”. BNI should be looked at as your BIGGEST CLIENT. Hmmmm, changes your mindset of BNI when you think about it like that, doesn’t it?

Then why attend every week if you aren’t “selling”? Because you are, or should be, working each week to educate the other members in your chapter. It also helps you develop relationships and model BNI’s “Givers Gain” philosophy.

BNI has always suggested that members network elsewhere – at Chamber events, social organizations, community service clubs, professional associations, etc. At those types of events and meetings there are probably more opportunities to network. When I attend a networking event, I can definitely tell the difference between people who are in (or have been in) BNI and those who haven’t. How? Those who haven’t had the privilege of a BNI education are “selling” vs. “networking”. I’m not saying that happens all the time, but there is definitely a distinct difference.

So think about this at your next chapter meeting:

  1. Am I educating my chapter members or trying to “sell” them?
  2. Have I done GOOD 1-2-1’s to learn more about my fellow members?
  3. Am I treating BNI like my biggest client?

Want some help understanding how to utilize your 60-seconds and 10-minute presentation to educate your chapter Members, contact me for a 1-2-1!

Sandi Ballard, acc, cvacc

Motivator. Taskmaster. Connector…COACH!

Growing Forward Success Coaching, Helping people Achieve Their Success! I help people define their goals and stay focused and motivated to achieve them!

Check out my book, “How Badly Do You Want ‘IT’?”


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  2. Greetings! Quite helpful guidance on this post! It really is the little changes that make the largest changes.
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