Tips to Grow Your Network

"Instead of better glasses, your network gives you better eyes." -Ronald Burt

Networking is a marathon and not a sprint! With that in mind, you might find yourself feeling stalled in your growth, which is completely understandable. However, there are some things you can consider to help build your network and boost your business! 

Utilize social media effectively 

With 4.9 billion people using social media across the world, connecting with others has never been easier. Utilize LinkedIn as your main way to build networking relationships. Geared to professionals, LinkedIn encourages like-minded people to connect. You are easily able to send messages to people in similar industries, to other BNI members, and to people from around the globe. 

While it is tempting to reach out to everyone on social media, every message and interaction you choose should be intentional and genuine. Ensure that the people you are building your network with people who share mutual goals and values, and that there is potential for a positive relationship on both sides. 

If you live in the same city, meet in person to develop your relationship further. Schedule a one-to-one with other BNI members and look for networking events where you can turn online connections into in-person ones.  

Attend events  

Seek out events that will benefit you and your business. This may include in-person or virtual meetings where you can connect with individuals who have the same values and interests or work in the same or a complimentary industry. Look for events where you can further build your professional relationships. Use these opportunities to meet people in a variety of industries and consider how they add value to your current network. 

As business owners, it is easy to become wrapped up in all things professional. However, carve out some time to attend social events to meet new people and build relationships outside of a professional environment.  

Consider your current network 

Your next valuable connection could be hiding in plain sight! Take some time to evaluate your current network with someone you may not have spoken to recently or identify missed opportunities. Looking at your current network with a closer eye might help you discover potential relationships that are primed for nurturing. 

Remember, don’t overcomplicate networking! Have fun and enjoy the process of getting to know people from a variety of industries and professions.  

You never know where or when you will meet someone you connect with. So put yourself out there, continue to be your authentic self, and you will forge genuine relationships with others.  

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