Many valuable contacts have been made through networking. They say, things happen through people you know. Which means the more people you know, the better the chance of goals being met.
Sometimes, the right type of networking group isn’t available. They also say, if you want something done, just do it yourself.
Learn how to start your own successful networking events you’d actually want to attend.
What’s So Great About Networking?
Whether you’re job hunting, looking to talk to like-minded individuals, or any other reason, nothing is as powerful as connections.
The benefits that come from networking are:
- Strengthening your business connections
- Learning new points of view and ideas
- Potential job opportunities
- Career advice and mentorship
- Professional and personal relationship building
- Professional resources for future projects
- Community support
- Gaining self-confidence
- Giving and receiving business referrals
The Goals Of A Networking Group
Each individual goes into a networking group with a list of goals.
They all vary based on individual circumstances. If you don’t have a networking goal, it might be wise to come up with a basic list before you either join a group or start one on your own.
Also, by identifying your why, creating your own networking group will be that much easier, and will attract the right kind of member.
Example networking goals might be:
- Finding the perfect job
- Obtaining new client prospects
- Growing your knowledge
Unlike already established business networking groups, when you start your own, you have the authority to approve the members.
This means you can create a highly curated group of professionals all working toward the same goal.
How To Start A Networking Group
Starting your own networking group sounds like it would be a daunting task. But, it really isn’t. And, it doesn’t have to cost very much, either.
It can be very fulfilling to be the founder of a successful networking group. You can take part in helping other professionals see success while building close relationships.
When you’re first starting your business networking group:
- Start small, with only a handful of members you chose personally.
- Vary the professional specialties.
- Decide on a maximum number of members.
- Define the goal of the group
- Find a location or digital platform like Meetup
- Plan the event
- Stay connected through a Facebook or Linkedin group
Types of Roles With A Networking Group
When creating your networking group, you might want to bring on some people to help support you.
- Outreach director: Finds people to join, speak, and sponsor the group
- Event coordinator: Makes all the arrangements for the event, whether choosing an online platform or a brick and mortar location.
- Designer: Creates the marketing graphics for online and in-person
- Board of Directors: assign leadership roles such as President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer.
And, then the leadership roles would have to be determined. Titles and who will hold them will be up to your discretion.
If there are membership fees, consider discounting them or making them free for the board of directions.
There’s really no such thing as an overnight success, and that holds true for networking events, too.
Expect a slow build.
With determination, consistency, and perseverance, your networking event can become the one many professionals look forward to.