Nowadays there are countless opportunities for networking. You could almost be networking 24 hours a day.
The formal networking clubs have annual membership fees ranging from a few hundred pounds a year to several thousand.
Some are great, some are good and some not so good. But networking is great! The old saying – ‘It’s not what you know but who you know’ is just so true.
So if you are not networking already, I do encourage you to visit a few clubs several times as a guest and join those which you believe you will derive the most benefit from and can make a significant contribution to.
But there is something far better which I also encourage you to consider. It will cost you nothing to join…
Form your own Mastermind Group…
Here is how to do it…
Your intention should be to form a group of up to ten people who commit to meet once every two weeks for a two-hour breakfast session. The purpose of these sessions will be:
1 – To exchange market knowledge
2 – To introduce potential customers to each other
3 – To discuss any particular challenges anyone in the group may be having and advise accordingly.
The people you want in your group should be in a similar position to yourself. For example if you are a salesperson, then you want to invite other top salespeople. If you are a sales director, you should invite other sales directors and if you are the MD or CEO, then you want to invite other MDs or CEOs.
The people you invite should be from companies who are likely to be serving customers in a similar sector to your own but are not in competition with you or each other. For example, if you sell office furniture, you would be looking to invite salespeople, sales directors, MDs or CEOs who sell carpeting, stationery, computer systems, IT networking solutions, copying equipment, mailroom services, office electrical installations, telephone systems, mobile communication solutions, etc.
Put together a list of appropriate businesses in your area and telephone the MD or CEO. Explain that you are putting together this Mastermind Group, the purpose of it, and that you would like to invite them (or a relevant person) to attend an introductory meeting with you, the purpose of which will be to meet with them, to get a commitment from them to attend regularly and to the three key principles. Then you have your no-cost Networking and Mastermind Group. And you are in charge!