Perhaps you have heard of the saying that no man is an island. It simply means that everyone needs to rely on others to survive. This 17th century saying is true even in the business setting. When building a business, having the skill and the will is not enough to succeed. Evidently, customers play an integral role, but having a network can help you reach success faster.
Business networking involves creating mutually beneficial relationships with other people in business or with clients and customers. One of the best advantages a small business owner can gain from these connections is additional business knowledge.
If you are considering building your connections to improve your business, here are some points you should keep in mind.
How Networking Can Help Your Business
First, you need to understand how exploring connections can benefit your business. Here are some advantages you can experience thanks to your business network:
- The exposure can help you develop new ideas and apply new thought processes when managing your business.
- You can improve the way you handle your business through the shared experiences you get from your circle.
- A network is an excellent source of support whenever you need it. These people understand what you are going through and can give you the right advice you need.
- With their help, you can further develop your skills and improve your business awareness.
How You Can Expand Your Network
Building a network does not have to be complicated. Here are the many ways you can start creating business connections.
- Find a mentor. Besides helping you with your business, a mentor has a network of people they can share with you. They can introduce you to various people who can help you with your specific business concerns.
- Join meetups. Take part in events that you know you will benefit from. Besides additional learning opportunities, you can get to know people from the same field or business. Try also to make connections with people outside of your industry. You can learn many things from them.
- Get in touch with the right people. If there are particular people you want to meet, make an effort to do so. Create a proposal and take the time to introduce yourself and your work to these people. If you believe they can positively influence your business, you should be more confident in reaching out to them.
What You Should Not Do
Here are the things you should avoid when building your business network:
- Avoid selling your products or services. Remember that your goal is to create a partnership wherein your businesses can benefit from each other. Focusing on making sales will only lead to missed opportunities. Nurture the relationship first before you attempt to sell anything. If you are patient, the connection can bloom and turn into more leads or sales in the future.
- Do not focus on handing out business cards. Instead of letting others know about you through your business cards, people will remember you better if you try to open up a conversation. It will help them feel more connected to you, as they can witness your genuine intentions better.
- Avoid taking “unimportant individuals” less seriously. You will not know when a connection will benefit you, so treat all people the same. Remember that you have no idea how much influence they have or who they will become eventually.
A business without any connections cannot survive on its own. As a business owner, you know the importance of seeking help from other organisations, suppliers, clients, and customers. Take network building an essential part of business management. It is an investment that can help you thrive later.
Need a business network that can give back to your business? Join us at Network Referral Group, and you will experience the power of referral marketing for your business. Contact us at 1300 936 665 to learn more about how we can help you.