Friday, March 1, 2024

Clarifying and Reporting Thank You for Closed Business

Understanding and Reporting Thank You for Closed Business seems to be confusing to BNI members.

Here  are some podcasts and resources to help provide clarification including –

-      -Who gets credit / Who to Thank

-       What amount to post

-       Why aren’t members notified

-       Reporting repeat referrals


·     -Who gets the credit for TYFCB (Thank You For Closed Business)?


·      Who do we thank for business as a result of our business networking?


·       What amount to post for TYFCB for different industries -


·       The basics of reporting TYFCB -


·      Why aren't members notified when TYFCB is recorded?


·       What is considered Repeat Business / Referrals?

Still have questions?  See the Vice President of your Chapter.

Happy Networking!


Sunday, December 25, 2022

Why is Reporting Important? AKA If it's NOT Reported - It Didn't Happen!

In this article, we are covering reporting which is very important to every member in BNI.  Everything is tracked, so if your activity, i.e. CEUs, 1-2-1s, referrals, TYFCB, etc. are not reported, they didn’t happen!  Every member is responsible for reporting their activity each week prior to their weekly meeting via BNIConnect or the BNI mobile app.  With the BNI Mobile App you can report as you go during the week.

These weekly reports roll up into monthly and yearly reports. This data provides valuable feedback to chapters on their performance as reported by the Chapter Traffic Light reports. In addition to the Chapter Traffic Light reports, the Palms data also provides feedback on the individual members via the Member Traffic Light Reports AKA Power of One Report.

So, why is reporting important? BNI was founded on structure, which is one of the major aspects that makes BNI different from other networking organizations. Being able to give the statistics for the organization is one reason many people in business want to become part of BNI. Our reporting shows a successful track record.

Anyone who is part of BNI knows our philosophy is Givers Gain. I recently read an article that talked about many aspects of BNI and how reporting demonstrates you're a contributing member of the group. It was a very interesting perspective. Here is the link - A Practical Litmus Test to Givers Gain.

BNI members commit to the Givers Gain® philosophy, whereby they work to give business to their fellow networkers, trusting in the principle of reciprocity for the growth of their own business. By measuring members’ giving of their time through meeting attendance and one-to-ones, their trust through referrals, their commitment to chapter growth through inviting visitors, and their commitment to personal growth through CEUs, the Power of One report serves as a litmus test for whether a member is committed to the Givers Gain® philosophy and shows their contribution to their fellow BNI Chapter Members.

Does your Power of One report show your commitment to the BNI Givers Gain philosophy?
Here are some additional resources:

Please contact your Support Director for any questions.

In appreciation,


Area Director

Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Preparing Your Sub to Represent you at Your BNI Meeting – AKA – Dos and Don’ts

 So, you know you’re going to miss a meeting and you need to get a substitute.  This article discusses how to properly prepare your sub to represent you at your BNI meeting along with some Best Practices (Dos) and some Not Recommended (Don’ts).

Best Practices – (Dos)

1.     Plan ahead.  Line up some possible subs before you need them.  It is advisable to contact at least five people and discuss with them that you would like to ask them the favor of them to sub for you at your BNI meeting at some point in the future.  

a.     By planning ahead and talking with them before you actually need them, you can discuss their availability.  How much advance notice they would need.  This way you know who you have to give advance notice to and who you can call at the last minute.

b.     Read the document/article ‘Who Makes a Good Substitute.’  In the article it gives a list of possibilities with the first being someone who can fill a seat in the chapter.

c.     Discuss with them what being a sub for you would entail. 

d.     How it would benefit them.

e.     Invite them to attend before you need them as a sub so they will know first hand what a meeting is like.

f.      When you follow up with visitors, a good question to ask is, would you be open to subbing for me in the future?  Often times visitors are eager to visit again and would welcome the opportunity to sub.


2.     Set Expectations. Part of the above discussion is also to set expectations with your prospective sub. 

a.     Let them know that they would be expected to give your infomercial, which you will supply to them in advance. 

b.     The day and time of the meeting and that they would be expected to arrive on time and stay for the entire meeting.  Explain the benefit of getting there early for the open networking and to meet the other members. 

c.     Explain they will also have the opportunity to give an infomercial about their business provided their seat is not filled in the chapter.  And be sure and let them know the time that they will have for their infomercial, i.e. 30, 45, 60 seconds.  You certainly want them prepared for you as well as for themselves.


3.     Prepare Your Sub.  The time has come that you know you’re going to miss a meeting. 

a.     Call one of your selected subs and give them as much advance notice as possible.  Let them know the date you will be needing them to sub.

b.     Gain their confirmation

c.     Get them registered in BNIConnect

d.     Send them your infomercial right away.  The better prepared your sub is, the better your creditability will be with your fellow Chapter members.  And the more open your sub will be to sub again in the future.

e.     Follow up the week before and the day before to make sure everything is a ‘go.’

f.      Make sure they are prepared. 

                                                i.     Know the timeframe for the meeting. 

                                               ii.     Know the location and have directions.

                                             iii.     To bring plenty of business cards.


Not Recommended (Don’ts)

1.     Don’t wait until the last minute unless it’s an emergency.  If you do have to get a sub at the last minute, hopefully you have someone on your list you can call at the last minute, like your friend, relative, or a neighbor.  If not, then that’s when you could use that person from your office, but letting them know that if their business is the same as yours, they will not be able to talk about their business.  They will only be allowed to give your infomercial.


2.     As stated above, it is not recommended to have a sub whose business is already represented in the Chapter because you lose creditability with your fellow members.  This is an opportunity for you to build creditability with your fellow members by having someone who can fill a seat in the chapter or a consumer (like your neighbor, relative, or friend) or a client who can give you a good testimonial.  Read the article – ‘Who Makes a Good Sub’ for a list of suggestions in the order of selection.


3.     Don’t use the same sub over and over.*  In most chapters, the recommendation and/or Chapter Rule is that a sub cannot sub more than 3 times in a rolling six-month period for the entire chapter.  Why?  Because more than this, the chapter is giving away the privileges of membership.  Members have paid their membership fees and are expected to meet certain requirements to be a member in good standing.  By allowing subs to attend with no limit, basically is giving away free membership.  The Community Builder needs to track member's attendance and also the usage of subs.  *This also needs to apply to the person from the member’s office because some members are solopreneurs and don’t have an admin or marketing person to ‘fill in’ for them so they need to be abiding by the same criteria.


4.     On the list of possible subs is someone from another chapter whose seat is not filled in your chapter, while this is an option, it is way down on the list of recommended selections, like next to last.  Again, it’s about building your creditability with your fellow members and Givers Gain.  The first recommendation should always be someone who can fill a seat in the chapter.  Someone you’ve possibly talked to about visiting.  Call and ask a favor.  A client who can give you a good testimonial.  A Friend, Relative, Neighbor, i.e. a Consumer.  Your sub does not have to have a business of their own.  These make good subs because they can possibly use the services of the other members and that’s referrals you are giving to the chapter.


5.     Don’t use an absence because you failed to plan ahead and find a sub.  There will be true emergencies like, getting up sick or having a sick child, having a flat tire/car trouble on the way to the meeting, etc.  That is what the 3 absences in a rolling six-month is intended for not a failure to plan ahead.  Many times I have seen members use their emergency absence when they should have planned ahead and then they have a true emergency and it puts them at three absences.

Attendance is very important in BNI to build creditability and build relationships with your fellow members.  A member who has 3 absences in six months, receives 73% less business. 

Think of it in terms of having a retail store and having to close the door of your business if you can’t be there.  How many times do you think a consumer is going to recommend you or keep coming back when you’re not open for business?  While a sub does not totally count as full attendance*, you’re at least represented at your meeting.  And by planning ahead and providing a sub who can add value, adds to your credibility with your fellow members.

*Lates, Leave early, and Subs count as .5 attendance on the Power of One reports.

Please check with your Support Director for any questions about this information.


BNI Podcast #436 – Low Absences = More Referrals

BNI Podcast # 579 – Sub Abuse or is my chapter actually smaller

BNI Podcast #490 – Show Up – Make Money

BNI Podcast #329 – 80% of Success is Showing Up

Saturday, October 22, 2022

Power of One Explained


The Power of One report is published each month. The report is compiled from the activity that is reported in the PALMS report for the previous six months. The report along with the Palms report shows the activity of each member. The Power of One report shows by points and color the level of activity of each member with Green being an indicator that the member is doing the level of activities to be successful. 

Statistics indicate that those members who are green typically earn 6x more than members not in the green. These activities include One to Ones, CEUs, visitors, sponsoring new members, etc. and if done effectively and efficiently are proven to help members build their business, get more referrals, and make more money.

Reporting is key, because both the PALMS report and the Power of One report are a direct result of members reporting their activities. Members are expected to report their weekly participation activity via BNIConnect on a weekly basis or use the BNIConnect Mobile app.

Recognition is a Core Value in BNI. Green Buttons are presented to those members who achieve Green on the Power of One Report each month.  Doing the recommended activities will bring members more success and a better return on investment. The Power of One report is for the previous six months of a member’s activities.

The Power of One Report is presented to each member of the chapter each month along with the criteria for the Power of One, i.e. the activities expected and how the scoring works.

The goal for the region is for 50% of Chapter Members to be ‘in the Green’ and no members in Grey. BNI is a marketing system to help members build relationships which leads to the trust of the other members wanting to help each other succeed. BNI presents many opportunities and education to help members understand how BNI works. BNI works if the member works. Often members are actually doing the activities, but aren’t reporting their activity. These activities are a good investment of a member’s time, if done effectively, and will result in more referrals and more business for the member.

What are the activities?

Attend Weekly Chapter Meeting.  Arrive on time and staying for the full 90 minutes and having a sub when absent.

1 Referral a Week

1 One to One per Week

1 CEU per Week

1 Visitor per Month

Sponsor 1 new member per year

Refer to the article 'Secret Formula for Success' for a more detailed explanation of each of these activities and why they are important to achieve success in BNI.

If you have any questions about any of this information, please ask your VP or your Support Director.

Thursday, July 28, 2022

Creating a Culture of Shared Success

 In podcast #529 ‘Culture Eats Strategy for Breakfast,’ Dr. Misner goes into the details of what that means.  In this article, I’m  going to touch on some of those details.

One of the single greatest benefits of being a BNI member is being part of a group. Not only is it a great source of business and potential revenue, but also a support network full of high-caliber business professionals that you can trust. Sure, all BNI members are looking to grow their individual businesses and ultimately make more money, but the fact remains that being part of a group significantly increases your chances of making the right kind of contacts and pushing your business to the next level.

Consider this one simple sentiment: The better the group does, the better you do as individuals.  Would you agree?

Like any business, we rely on the contributions of our team, which in this case is the other members. With everyone pulling in the same direction, you are far more likely to achieve your group goals, and benefit individually as a result.


Working Together

Would you agree that you want to be part of a winning team?   A high-performance team?  A winning team consists of individuals doing their part.


Let’s go over a few things to ensure that your chapter is promoting a culture of shared success. 


Grow Business

Do you want to grow your business?  Then each and every member needs to contribute for the chapter to be successful as a whole.


BNI is a system.  It’s actually a marketing system that teaches its members how to market their business and grow their business.

BNI works if members work the system instead of just going to a BNI meeting and expecting referrals to fall out of sky.

Everything that BNI asks members to do is 37 years of trial and error to perfect the system.

Many have tried to mimic BNI by taking out key components, like accountability, but no other group has been successful.  BNI is the oldest and largest networking organization in the world.  It works, if the members work and follow the system.

Organization chart

Part of that Structure is the Leadership of a Chapter.  Members taking on a part of running a Chapter. 

Each one of you is a business owner or part of a business.  Your livelihood depends on how successful that business is..right?  Do you leave it to someone else to do your job and sit back and reap the results?  I don’t think so.  Each one of you are strong leaders.  That’s why you are entrepreneurs and I believe that’s why you became part of BNI.

Successful BNI Chapters are run like a business and every member does their part to help their chapter be successful


So if it’s your goal to be successful in BNI, then you need to do your part.  If everyone does their part, then the group as a whole, benefits and is successful.


For a BNI chapter to be successful, All members have to be motivated and committed.

Morale is very important in any group. People feel better about being part of a group that is full of committed people. Good practice rubs off on everyone and it’s motivational to see a packed room each week. And when you’re in the room, make sure you’re really in the room, listening, engaging, and creating a great atmosphere for your fellow members as well as visitors.

Time to Take Action

It’s time for all members to step up.  To be onboard, motivated, committed, and taking responsibility for their chapter’s success which will lead to their own success.

Ninety Minute Member

BNI works if you work the system.  It works even better if you learn how to do the key performance indicators more effectively and efficiently.  And when you do, and you get all your members rowing in the same direction.  It’s a beautiful thing.

So what am I asking from each of you?

Be a Champion of your Chapter

Get behind your Chapter and promote it wherever possible. Share the success stories on social media, talk about the group in other circles and support your fellow members if they are sharing exciting news. If there are positive stories coming out of the group, then let the world know about it.

Be positive
Momentum breeds progress. Every group needs energy and positivity to fuel its growth. So, make sure you approach your BNI membership with a proactive and positive outlook. This rubs off on other members and creates a great atmosphere for visitors.

Take responsibility
- It is no one person’s responsibility to get new members,

-           It is no one person’s responsibility to give referrals,

-           It is no one person’s responsibility to organize 121s etc.

It is the responsibility of ALL members. Don’t give in to a diffusion of responsibility and just assume that others will do it for you. Be proactive, not reactive, and definitely not inactive.


And it’s time for each of you to take on the responsibility of the leadership of the chapter.  One person can’t do it all.  If everyone does their part then it’s not a burden on one person.  It’s a Team effort.

So, the time for Leadership Transition is now.  Each one of you who is taking on a Leadership position needs to assume it now.  Commit to doing your fair share.

Invest in it
Make BNI part of your routine. After all, you only get out what you put in. You’ve invested in it financially.  Invest your time and make the very best of your membership. A few minutes each day devoting time to leading your chapter to success, could really pay off for you and your business


BNI is all about shared success. The effort and contribution you make as individuals directly correlates with the prosperity of the group. So, if you want more business, be a team player, be proud of your group and promote and be a part of a culture of shared success.


Celebrate your Success

Then you all can celebrate in your chapter’s success as well as your own.

In appreciation,


Area Director

Why Attendance is a Key Success Factor in BNI

All of these podcasts and articles are very good, and I encourage you to listen/read all of them.  The paragraph in Podcast #274 – Did I Miss the Memo bests sums up why attendance is important.

BNI members who treat their BNI meetings like an appointment with prospects and fellow business associates are much more likely to be successful in this program, because these are appointments. These are appointments with your best referral partners, and you don’t want to miss an appointment with your best referral partners. It’s very important. I think that the chapters that have this sense of accountability where the members understand that this is an appointment and you need to treat it like a good appointment should be treated, and you don’t want to just not show up and have poor attendance.  I think that those people tend to be stronger business professionals and more successful, and they certainly are going to build better relationships because of their regular participation in their chapter.

And I would add, when you’re looking at your calendar and making appointments, schedule around your BNI meeting. Think about it.  If you had another client meeting, you would tell your prospect, I have another meeting at that time and then give them the times you are available.  Nine times out of ten, your prospect will understand, because they want to deal with someone who is successful.  Having appointments on your calendar shows that you are successful.

Thinking that your fellow BNI members will understand that you have a client appointment instead of attending your BNI meeting is OK, will not last. It speaks to your creditability. Every member made a commitment to the attendance policy. It’s about honoring that commitment and the best way to honor that commitment is to treat your BNI meeting as an appointment with your best referral partners, and they will be committed to you. BNI is your prospecting and networking time to create new Business.  If you start thinking this way, you will get much more out of BNI.

Podcast #490 – Show Up – Make Money

Podcast #436 – Low Absences = More Referrals

Podcast #218 – What is a Quality Member

Podcast #236 – Behaviors and Credibility

Podcast #545 – Full Participation

Podcast #261 – The Art of Being There

Podcast #681 – Mindset is Everything

Podcast #533 – There’s No Substitute Like a Good Substitute  

Podcast #274 – Did I Miss the Memo

Podcast #583 – How Late is Late?

Podcast #579 – Sub Abuse

Podcast #387 – Using or Abusing

13 Years of in BNI – My Secrets to Success -

In appreciation,


Area Director

VCP - The Basics

The VCP acronym is one you will hear about in BNI quite a bit and there are many articles and podcasts on these principles, i.e. Visibility, Credibility, and Profitability.  Let’s examine the basics from the perspective of becoming a new member in a new chapter or core group. 

Visibility – In order for the other members to get to know you, you have to show up.  Attendance is key.  In Podcast #329, Woody Allen said that 80% of success is showing up.  In BNI, you’re not just a name on a roster.  We have an attendance policy which is to help all the members.  You paid to be part of a group that works together to help each other to grow their respective businesses. Visibility is the first step in getting referrals and training your referral team.

Credibility – Think of someone you trust.  You probably trust that person because you know they will do what they way.  Building your credibility in BNI, is building relationships with your fellow members by doing what you say you will do when you say you’ll do it.  It starts with showing up for your meeting each week on time or being early is even better.  Dressing the part, even on Zoom.  And being prepared with your part of the meeting and your weekly presentation.  After all, this is your time to train your referral team.

Also, consistently inviting and having visitors is another great way to build credibility with your referral partners, because visitors equate to possible business for someone in the group and possibly a potential member. 

The third element of VCP is Profitability – That’s what we’re all here for, right?  To get referrals.

-       You cannot have profits if no one knows you

-       You cannot have profits if no one trusts you

How do we measure VCP?  By the referrals we receive.

So, in order to get the results you desire, you must learn to do the activities efficiently and effectively.  Statistics have shown, the more you learn, the more you earn.  Be open to learning how to network differently and more effectively.

So, ask yourself these questions…

-       Are you willing to do the activities, i.e. the Key Performance Indicators to get the results you say you desire?

-       Are you willing to accept feedback to improve your results?

-       Are you coachable?

-       Are you willing to be held accountable?

This is a process that’s all new to most of us.  For the process to work, we need to be ‘all in.’ 

BNI provides us most everything we need to be successful; we just have to come with a positive attitude, be prepared each week to learn, and work the process.

In appreciation,


Area Director

Clarifying and Reporting Thank You for Closed Business

Understanding and Reporting Thank You for Closed Business seems to be confusing to BNI members. Here  are some podcasts and resources to hel...