• It’s inefficient.

    You don’t get to pick who is in the room, so you have to spend time working the room to find the right people - people who work with clients like yours, offer services like yours and understand the value of what you do. In most networking groups, there’s little or no alignment of members, so it takes a lot of work on your part to find your people.

  • It’s passive.

    Even the most elite networking groups use a “pitch and pray” format - give your 30-second elevator speech, listen to everyone else’s 30-second elevator speech, and then cross your fingers hoping someone understands what you do and has a client that needs it. There’s very little active engagement with other members, and a lot of that engagement is social, rather than revenue generating.

  • It takes too long.

    Because there’s little to no alignment among members, it can take a long time to build the know-like-trust process that leads to referrals and (hopefully) leads to real revenue. Potential referral sources may test you with their smallest or most difficult clients, or you may do business with a member of your networking group and never get referred to their clients. You may even start to wonder if you’re doing it “wrong” because you’re not getting the results you hoped for. It’s an investment of time, money and energy that results in very little return. And getting in front of more people and collecting more business cards doesn’t feel like the solution.

  • Not everyone is invested or engaged at the same level.

    People join traditional networking groups for various reasons. Some want name recognition for themselves and their businesses; some want visibility in the community; some want a social club; and some are just there because their business paid for a membership and they need someone to fill the seat. Not everyone is in growth mode, and not everyone has the same high level of engagement or follow-up.

  • It’s not your people.

    You like doing business with other women, but at most traditional networking events, there aren’t a lot of women in the room. It still feels like an old boys’ network, and a lot of business still gets done outside of the meetings at country clubs and sports events. And you’d like to leave the “bro culture” and sexist comments behind. (#metoo)

  • It’s not about generating revenue.

    Traditional networking groups do not make revenue generation their primary purpose. They focus on social events, industry issues, community issues, education, best practices or referral exchanges that can feel more transactional than productive. Revenue generation happens coincidentally, not on purpose.

  • It’s efficient.

    You have an instant “dream team” of referral partners who work with clients like yours and offer products or services that are complementary to yours.

     

  • It’s active.

  • It produces results quickly.

Everyone is engaged. Like you, group members are responsible for generating revenue for their businesses, they are in growth mode, and they recognize the importance of Return on Engagement.

  • It’s your people. (That was easy.)

  • It’s obsessively focused on revenue generation.

  • It’s the way you want to network.

    Quality over quantity. Building relationships and leveraging them. Creating a community. Professional and personal. Meaningful referrals. Investment in everyone’s success. 

     

When members of a networking group are aligned in this way, results are amplified and lead to real revenue. Everything else - ideas for business, best practices, collective learning, relationship-building, bonding over common issues - happens naturally.