Networking creates opportunities in all directions
Some people HATE networking.
Some people LOVE networking.
Some say it doesn’t work for them. [This is a whole other conversation as its rarely the Lead Gen Tool (ie networking) and mostly the execution]
Some people live by networking.
After running a networking company for 8-years we’ve seen so many different ways that networking has worked for people. So many un-planned, un-choreographed moments that have created amazing opportunities.
So I wanted to share with you a little story about one of these networking moments that happened to me at a networking event.
This story starts back in 2013. The Business League was in it’s early days. We were doing it part time and were having to fix up a lot of things so it took a fair bit of our energy and focus away from our other businesses. I was still attending some other networking events – mainly for our other businesses.
At that time, Samuel our eldest son was about 4-months old – he’d been born in December 2012. So we were in the midst of growing two businesses, sleepless nights, getting used to our new roles as parents. If you’ve had kids you’ll remember that crazy first 6-months. Well I was in the thick of it.
I was pretty exhausted.
Anyway, I went to this networking event. I was up the back, making myself a cup of coffee as you do and I got talking to the guy next to me who was grabbing his coffee as well.
He asked about me what I did. I chatted for a bit and then I asked him what he did?
The worst question ever!!!
He politely told me he was the Guest speaker and the CEO of the Gold Coast Suns (New AFL Team)
I was like – you idiot!
I then tried to take my foot out of my mouth. It was one of those ‘duh’ moments.
So anyway we had a laugh, I apologised, explained about sleep and son etc
Anyway we had a good chat and then I lined to his presentation and was really impressed with his approach to the Suns, the culture they were creating and the stories he shared.
After the event I reached out. Shared with him that I really appreciated his presentation, and specifically what I took from it. This relationship then grew and we ended up over the next three years getting the coach to present, and two CEO’s from the Gold Coast Sun’s.
So this was not a connection about $ for our business, but it was one about sharing amazing wisdom, insights and our community loved it. We also learned from being around high calibre people.
So did I get more business out of that connection? Maybe from tickets and people becoming members, but the real WIN’s were for us and our community to hang around some amazing leaders.
So that’s one of the things that can happen from networking.
Yes. A lot of people go into networking wanting more business. However, that’s only a small piece of the networking-pie.
It’s who you meet, what they expose you to and what ripple opportunities get created. That’s even more exciting that just getting a new customer..
So keep your eyes open.
Think about those different things that happened to you at networking events.
If you’ve got a funny story, a different story, I’d love you to share it with us. Please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org