Solo(ish): Insights on Networking & Personal Branding
Win The Gold With Networking!
Going to a BNI meeting having not done any work behind the scenes is like an athlete going to the Olympics without training - neither is likely to win any medals. 

I threw the Discus in High School, so I enjoy watching the Olympics. As I watched all of these great athletes compete, I started to think about how much the Olympics and BNI have in common.

And here’s how: coming to BNI, having not done any work behind the scenes, is like an athlete going to the Olympics without training – neither is likely to win any medals. 

Medals in BNI terms = getting or giving any business.

Olympic athletes follow strict routines around exercise, conditioning, mental strengthening, practice, rest, recovery as the competition builds up. Even after all this effort, only one can win GOLD once every four years in any one event. 

In BNI, however, all the members can win GOLD multiple times every week, and instead of competing, we collaborate to help each other win.

So, in BNI, what can members do to get BNI Fit to win GOLD for themselves and help others achieve GOLD as well?

Let’s be honest; athletes know what works to achieve GOLD. They need natural talent, ruthless and selfish dedication, plus a touch of luck. 

In BNI, it’s much more relaxed and the opposite of selfish, but we do know what works: Have a good, referable business, be a good person, prepare for the meeting (in terms of your weekly presentation, referrals, and testimonials), attend weekly meetings, carry out effective regular one to ones, make referrals, and follow up on referrals you receive, invite visitors and record your activity.

Pretty simple formula. You don’t even need much luck!

What about those Olympics?

Who enjoyed the Olympics? Some incredible performances, records were broken, hard-luck stories, some expected performances, some come from nowhere stories, and some come from hard time stories. Equipment failure, accidents, medical issues. The Olympics had all the drama.

All the medals have been awarded; some have gone home happy regardless of getting a medal or not. Some would have been unhappy with just one gold or the color of the medal they got.

Of course, the vast majority missed out on a medal. There are only 3 medals per event and only one GOLD. 

What we do know is that no one turned up without massive preparation. The athletes put in a ton of hard work. 

There was an incredible amount of practice, the proper diet, help from the best coaches, genuine natural talent, and a little bit of luck. Even then, the conditions needed to be just right for things to go their way.

In BNI, we know, like the Olympics, just turning up without putting in some work and preparation into your membership means you and the chapter won’t get the medals.

Go for the GOLD in BNI

So, what activities get us BNI going for the gold? The good news is we know what activities work. They certainly aren’t as difficult as trying for an Olympic medal. If we all do them consistently, everyone in the chapter wins, not just us. And we aren’t competing for one gold medal; there are medals every day, every week. 

We aren’t even competing with each other; we are collaborating, so everyone wants us to succeed, not fail, so we can win instead of them.

This is all we need to do consistently; we don’t even need luck or things to fall our way.

  1. Have a good, referrable business. This is your natural talent.
  2. Be a good person. This is like not cheating by taking performance-enhancing drugs.
  3. Prepare for the meeting (your weekly presentation, referrals, and testimonials). This is like getting ready for the big event.
  4. Attend meetings. Can’t get a medal without turning up.
  5. Carry out effective, regular one-to-ones, especially in your power team or contact sphere. One to two per week is recommended. This is like meeting your coaches, nutritionist, etc.
  6. Make referrals and follow up on referrals. This is like working with other athletes and using the advice you receive.
  7. Invite visitors. Great athletes attract others to their sport, so the sport grows.
  8. Record your activity. Athletes need data to see how they are going and where to improve.

Pretty simple, really.

BNI is where everyone can win GOLD

BNI is where everyone can win GOLD, not just the super talented, super dedicated, or super lucky. But you must be in it and prepared for everyone to win.

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