How many clients can you meet within two hours? Not even taking into consideration the prep time for these meetings, or follow up. Is it two? Maybe four? Depending on the nature of your work and your time management abilities, you might even be able to squeeze 6 to 8 client meetings into one 2-hour block. That sounds pretty impressive, right? Would that make you too busy for BNI though?
What if you could conduct effective, productive meetings with 35+ people in one 2-hour chunk?
If you’re reading this, chances are you already have that opportunity every week at your own BNI Chapter meeting. Your fellow members are not only potential clients, but they can connect you with their entire network, who can then also become clients of yours.
Furthermore, even a small chapter of only 30 members should have at least 7 visitors in the room each week, provided every member is meeting their contribution expectations to the group. Given that most business people would see at most 4 different clients in a 2 hour block, that’s almost double the exposure right there, just from the visitors!
Too busy for BNI?
I hear this old chestnut now and then, but my immediate thought upon hearing it is that the person I’m speaking with has incorrectly assessed the value BNI provides. If you’re properly prepared and actively involved, you’re not “spending” time at BNI, you’re leveraging time through BNI and working on your business!
Better yet, the cost of BNI is fixed, while the capacity for leveraging that time is uncapped.
What if we start talking about 60+ people?
Globally, the standard size of a BNI Chapter’s membership is trending towards 60+. In some parts of the world, Chapters have more than 100 members. Why limit yourself to networking with 25 or so members each week, when you could have access to the extended networks of many more? And if you think that Chapters with 100 members can’t offer value, then why do they have 100 or more people networking there every week?
“Be the change you want to see…”
Gandhi is contentiously purported to have said these immortal words and when applied to the idea of our own Chapter’s membership base, they would suggest that if we want more members to network with, we should be the ones instigating that growth.
- Inviting visitors.
- Following up with visitors, especially those in your contact sphere.
Even if the visitor who attended was invited by someone else, there might be some value in you following up with them. While it’s true that not every visitor is in a position to be a customer of yours, science shows that everyone has a meaningful connection to around 150 people, so every visitor is a potential referral source.
If they have the potential to be a great referral source for you, why wouldn’t you invest a few minutes to phone them the next day, to offer to meet and discuss ways in which you could both benefit each other?