fbpx

If You Only Do One Thing Differently In 2020

The Christmas break is over and most of us are in the process of returning to work, if we haven’t already. I’m hoping most people had the chance to take a break, as I know it can sometimes be hard in small business.

Over the break I spent some time contemplating the new year for Realise Business and our team, considering the ways we might grow and improve our services and skills for the year ahead. At the same time, I couldn’t help but think about other small business owners, our clients, and what might be the most valuable piece of advice I could give for the year ahead? There’re so many options and depending on who you speak to the ideas will change but, in my experience, if I were to limit my advice to just one thing to prioritise in 2020, the answer is Networking.

It’s important to meet other business owners for many reasons but I recommend networking first and foremost because it is low cost – the biggest cost is your time when making that regular commitment. In my experience, the return on your investment of time is always worth it. Aside from the referral potential, it can give you an opportunity to test your product offering and your pitch and learn from others who’ve been there before you. There are many variations to networking groups and some are more structured than others but my advice is to choose what’s best for you in the space where you feel most comfortable and take the opportunity to tweak your ideas on advice from the various other business people you encounter.

When choosing a group, all groups offer something slightly different; some are more structured, and some are more casual like our Pub Biz event. What I say to all my clients is, don’t give up on networking, if you find that the first group of people are not right for you, try another group or at the very least, try it a couple more times to give yourself a chance to be more comfortable with it. Networking is not easy, even to the most seasoned networkers, but if you take yourself out of your comfort zone, I promise you it will be worth it.

Why I believe in hosting networking events for free

We see over 2,000 clients per year at Realise Business which gives us great insight into the small business community and what motivates people. Most often people will attend events first for the education they may receive and as a secondary motivation, a chance to make new connections. It’s on this foundation that we’ve built our event series, in particular, Breakfast with an Entrepreneur and Pub Biz -two completely different environments to network in but both offering the same key components: you’ll learn something to take back into your business and you’ll meet new people.

Our regular monthly networking event seriesPub Biz, is held for free in 3 different locations across Sydney at present. Many people ask why we do it for free and the truth is, we do it because we see the difference it makes for small business owners when building connections with each other. Our Pub Biz Networking is not only free for people to attend but our team also attend on their own time. In our coaching team’s experience of participating in our events and speaking with clients, they’ve seen what networking can do to build the knowledge, confidence and success of a small business owner. Even now, when the world is becoming more and more digital by nature, there’s no comparison to getting out and meeting people face to face at a networking event.

Our events give people the opportunity to speak with our coaches, we create a community and understand the different capabilities of the businesses within that community through the expertise of the people in our team. When you meet a coach or a team member at an event, they’ll immediately identify who else you will benefit from meeting. Every person in the room truly and only want small business owners to be successful, it’s our passion and it’s why we do it for free.

The most successful networkers

As both a coach and CEO, I find it incredibly satisfying to watch how generous people are with each other at our networking events. They are always willing to help each other for little to no reward for themselves. In fact, I’d say the very best “networkers” are those who attend with no agenda at all. When you are your own brand, the best thing you can do is to be authentic. Be generous in your conversations with people and don’t expect every person you meet to become a client or business partner. And to truly make the most out of it, just keep going – your consistency in showing up and in being considerate in your conversations is how people will remember you and it’s the reason why they’ll come back to look for you when they do have a need for your services. You’d be surprised by the amount of times someone walks through the door of one of our networking events and asks for “the CRM guy” or “that website SEO person” they met a couple of months ago. We do our best to reconnect people when possible but the best thing you can do is to put that two hours into your calendar every couple of weeks and be diligent in your networking and relationship building.

Every group is different and as I said, if the first group is not for you don’t let that be an excuse to stop going to other networking groups. I’ll often recommend our clients try a different type of small business networking outside of what we offer if I think it would be a better fit for them.

The value of networking is comparable to none and I truly believe that every small business owner should be doing it in some way shape or form, whichever way suits you best, whether you believe you need the business or not. Many times, the community and friendships you make are of even more benefit to your success, health and well being than the new business opportunities you’ll also encounter.

Click on the links below to register for our February Networking events:

Manly Pub Biz, Thursday, 19th March, 5:00pm – 7:00pm. Register Now

Surry Hills Pub Biz, Wednesday, 11th March, 5:00pm – 7:00pm. Register Now

Cronulla Pub Biz, Friday, 6th March, 4:00pm – 6:00pm. Register Now

Share This Article!

[Sassy_Social_Share]

Share the Post:

Find the Right Digital Solution for Your Business

Related Posts

Martin Rogers
Chief Executive Officer

Martin holds an extensive background and certification in Business, Marketing, and Strategy with over 20 years’ experience specialising in Strategic Thinking, Business Growth, Leadership and Team Development, across a number of industries. Martin utilises a collaborative leadership style and has a thirst for problem solving, understanding the latest trends and identifying the uniqueness that gives businesses their edge.

Mark McCrea
Chief Operations Officer

Mark McCrae stands out as a highly efficient Operations professional, known for his strategic oversight and management prowess within the corporate landscape. With years of experience under his belt, Mark has become synonymous with operational excellence, streamlining processes to enhance productivity and drive sustainable growth. Mark's forward-thinking approach and unwavering commitment to excellence have solidified his reputation as a cornerstone of operational success.

Razz Khan
Chief Marketing Officer

With over a decade of experience, Razz has a proven track record of driving growth and enhancing the digital footprint of various brands across multiple industries. His expertise spans across SEO, PPC, content marketing, social media strategies, and analytics. Razz is known for his innovative approaches to solving complex marketing challenges. Razz's passion for digital marketing, combined with his commitment to client success, makes him a valuable asset to any team looking to elevate their digital presence..

Greg Kay
Chief Commercial Officer

Greg has more than 25 years success in working with many for the development and implementation of growth strategies for businesses by building strong relationships through effective partnerships. Greg constantly strives for opportunities to have a positive influence in the personal and business lives of the people he works with.

Chris Wilborn
Contracts Manager And Advisor

Chris is a results-driven leader with a wealth of knowledge derived from his more than two decades in the NGO, corporate and government sectors. As a current business owner, from his prior work as a growth-minded CEO and a background working with disability organisations, Chris is deeply passionate about the NDIS, small business community and the central role they play in the fabric of our society.

Lindsay Munns
Executive

As a long term member of the Realise Business Board, Lindsay has temporarily stepped into this key role to facilitate the changeover of Chief Executive as part of our CEO succession strategy. Additionally he is busy leading the roll out of a major new Government contract that will take Realise Business up to the next level of its vital place in the NSW Small Business Advisory scene.

Marisa Barresi
Office / Client Coordinator
- Business Connect

Shanice Bangar
Events / Client Coordinator - Digital Solutions

Mona Bucog
Event Coordinator

Over the past 12 years, Mona has honed her skills in customer service, specializing in managing and addressing a wide range of customer needs. She’s dedicated to providing exceptional service and ensuring customer satisfaction. Her experiences have helped her develop skills that assist organizations in achieving their goals. Her ultimate aim is to help them focus on what they love, and she will take care of the rest!