Build a referral network to expand your resources
Like all business processes, building a network works best when carried out purposefully. Successful networking requires a structured, strategic plan to achive your networking goals. You can get lucky, taking opportunities if and when they come along. You will be much better served by a plan. A plan where you are in control.
The Canterbury Bankstown Chamber of Commerce (CBCC) runs networking events regularly. Each month the CBCC runs Business After 5 #BA5. These events are sponsored and are always at new and interesting venues. As sponsored events we always learn more about our members and always try to add educational aspects to our events.
Building a Network is a key strategy to building business growth. Our CEO, Wally Mehanna wants every attendee to feel welcome and most of all to achieve their networking goals and want to come again and introduce new members.
Non-members are always welcome! New members always started as non-members so, we welcome the opportunity to impress you and be a part of your journey. We are confident that once you experience our events you’ll be back.
Our events offer light snacks or catering and other refreshments with alcohol usually able to be purchased by attendees from the bar.
Building a Network
Forbes Magazine describes four phases to successfully build a network.
Phase 1: Begin where you are, with what you already possess
Phase 2: Spread your net wide with local organizations
Phase 3: Grassroots one-on-one networking
Phase 4: Consider national organizations
Define Your Networking Goals
Networking goals are what you need or want to achieve. Networking goals provide you long-term vision and supplies short-term motivation. Goal setting helps you organise your time and your resources effectively. The most common goals revolve around a chance to:
- Build your support community
- Build your profile
- Find and win business
- Build your knowledge and expertise base
Goals help you track and evaluate whether the desired outcomes were achieved. To set your networking goals:
- Identify the person or the type of industry you need to make contact with
- Recognize whether you need to use your personal or professional networks
- Know exactly what you want from them or what you want to give them
- List suitable questions or networking strategies to achieve your goal(s)
Examples of networking goals:
- I will talk to at least 5 new people
- I will introduce myself to someone who is standing alone
- I will collect 10 business cards
- I will tell at least 5 people about my business
- I will make plans with someone for coffee next week