You don’t have to look far to find dozens of networking groups in Australia focused on business owners – all promising you great results, a return on your investment and other hefty benefits. The Gold Coast is no different. To be honest it could have more than the average city. From Meet-up groups, through those BNI and B4B models and the list goes on.
But how can you tell if any of these particular groups can offer you what they are promising? We’ve found that by looking for evidence of three, simple qualities, we call them the “Three C’s” you can get an accurate idea of whether or not a networking group is the real thing. The 3 C’s are – Commitment, Culture and Calibre. Let us explain.
THE FIRST C – COMMITMENT:
Networking involves building relationships and building relationships requires time. You will never walk into a networking event and walk out with a dozen useful business connections 5 minutes later – at least not quality leads that are highly likely to lead to something good. You’ll need to work at it, consistently and over time. Does your networking group take this into account? Are there multiple opportunities to connect with the same people over several weeks or months or are you pressurized to collect business cards the second you enter the building?
Lets face it, why would you be involved with people that aren’t as committed as you.
Below are some simple questions to ask to make sure your networking community has the commitment to support you.
- Is the networking community run by part-timers (do they do it out of passion) or by a registered entity that are serious about the events they run?
- Is it a one-person band?
- Are the attendees committed to improvement?
- Are the attendees committed to growth?
THE SECOND C – CULTURE:
Not all networking groups are created equal, in the same way that not all businesses want to achieve the same thing. I remember once being part of a networking group that purely focused on driving growth to get more returns. All networking efforts and activities this group partook in seemed to prioritise this factor over anything else including supportive engagement, finding opportunities for other business owners or sharing insights or even successes. The group started to flounder, with members not being able to relate to each other and soon the group imploded. The culture wasn’t adaptive to what the members wanted or needed.
Below are some simple questions to ask to make sure your networking community has the culture to support you.
- Do you feel welcome when you turn up?
- Are the members who attend regularly open?
- Do the members who attend regularly engage with you?
- Are they genuinely interested in what you do?
- Do you believe they will connect you to their community?
- Does it have a good, friendly vibe?
- What is their vision?
- What are their values?
- Are there toxic people that drain you and the people around them?
THE THIRD C – CALIBRE:
Is there any quality control process in place with regards to who gets to join the networking group? It is incredibly important that this checkpoint is in place. A networking group owes it to each of its members to surround them with peers who understand and can assist them with where they are at and where they want to get to. Even just a single chancer in a networking group filled with great calibre attendees can really bring the entire group down.
Stay tuned to our next few blogs, where we’ll be unpacking each of the above three qualities in more detail.
Below are some simple questions to ask to make sure your networking community has the calibre to support you.
- What level are the members at?
- Will they stretch you?
- Will they help you take your business to the next level?
- Do they have extensive communities?
- Will they connect you with their communities?
Find out more about our Business League Networking Business Breakfasts HERE. We hold them on the first Wednesday and third Tuesday of each month, so even if you can’t attend this one, you can always attend the next. We reckon these are completely “LEGIT”.