Sunday, May 23, 2021

The Importance of BNI Member Success Program

 This article was written by Sam Williamson a BNI Member from New Zealand.

Online BNI Member Success Program (MSP) Training

Member Success Program (MSP) training which is completed via our BNI University online learning platform is very important to each members success. MSP is core learning that every new member needs to complete to get up to speed with BNI for two reasons:

1. To ensure that they get value from BNI themselves. 

2. That they become and effective team member for the benefit of their fellow members.

The online MSP is easy to do, doesn’t take much time and the feedback we have had from members has been very positive. MSP is continuing education, just like is found in other professions e.g. legal, accounting, insurance, real estate etc.

Professional Development

Who is in a trade or profession that requires them to complete professional development hours to stay up to date and on form

BNI is no different, BNI provides professional development modules via BNI University to assist you throughout your BNI Career and in your business.

One of the core learnings every member needs is our Member Success Programme (MSP) training. Think of this as BNI Basic training, it is designed to get the member up to speed quickly so that they get the most out of their membership and become and effective team member of the chapter.

It is also a suitable as refresher for longer term members.

Lifelong Learning is our 2nd core value in BNI – we believe in continuous improvement of personal and professional skills.

Success always comes through a process of expansion and learning!

The More you Learn, the more your earn.  Also, Members must complete MSP prior to being added to the speaker rotation.

Please speak with your Leadership Team or your Director if you have any questions.

In Appreciation,

Annette

BNI Area Director.

Saturday, April 10, 2021

Are you Earning Points or Chasing Points?

 


At the first of every month, the Power of One Reports are published. They are made available on BNI Business Builder and listed under Resources > United States > GA Northeast.

Many members do not understand the 'Why' behind the Power of One reports. It was created to give members a quick way to understand the Palms data and what the data means. To understand if they were being active enough and efficient enough to achieve their desired results.

In this video, Tim Roberts explains the why behind the report and what it measures. He also goes on to explain why the activities for the Power of One will net you more quality referrals.
The activities as outlined by the Power of One report gives you the 'success formula, however, you also have to learn to be effective when you do these activities. Sure, you can meet with another member and chit-chat about different topics and that's a great way to start the relationship, but it's not until the other member wants to help find you referrals that the reciprocal part of the Power of One kicks in. As Tim explains in the video, it takes meeting with those potential power referral sources and training them on how to find you the quality referrals you desire. Teaching them what to look for, listen for, and how to start a conversation that will lead to a referral for you.

Another good video to watch is with Hazel Walker, who asks the question, 'Are you earning points or are you chasing points?' We all want our Power of One report to look good with as much Green as possible, but are we really doing the activities effectively and efficiently? And are we reporting our activity accurately? Keep in mind also, to some members this is a report of creditability. Think about it, do you want to pass a referral to another member with a red or grey Power of One score?

Walker This Way - Video #120 - Are YouEarning Points or Chasing Points?
If you have questions about The Power of One Reports or need help and support, reach out to your Support Director Consultant.

Here are some additional resources:


For previous articles refer to the Notably Green Blog.

And join the Facebook Group - Notably Green


Let me know if you have any questions and how I can be of help and if there are other topics you would like covered.
 
To Your Success,

Annette Mason
Area Director Consultant
  

Sunday, March 21, 2021

ACTIVATE

 


Hopefully, by now you have heard of ACTIVATE. If you have been around BNI for a while you've heard of Member Extravaganza, which is our Spring Membership Drive. BNI has rebranded and revamped this program and for Spring 2021 it is called ACTIVATE.

Each Chapter and Core Group is asked to choose from 3 Growth Accelerators and appoint Growth Champions to lead the activities to help their chapters grow their membership. There will be training webinars and support material for each one of the Growth Accelerators.

There will be lots of recognition, cash prizes, as well as a grand prize! Each member who sponsors a new member will receive $50 and for those chapters/core groups who sponsor a total of 6 new members, the sponsoring member's names will go into a drawing for a new iPad or $1000!

The three Growth Accelerators are a Visitor's Day, BNI Game, or Contract Spheres. Get with your Leadership Team to find out which one your chapter will be doing.

So how can you prepare and participate?

  • Start making your list of Referral Partners you would like to have on your team.
  • Go through your database and see who you know who has a business. And/or follow up with friends and clients you haven't talked with in a while. Some may be looking for an opportunity to network.
  • Ask people you know if they know people in the industries that you want as referral partners, i.e. if you need a web designer, then ask everyone you know if they know a good web designer and ask for an introduction. Contact them and ask if they are looking to grow their business. If so then invite them to come to your chapter meeting to meet other business professions who can pass them referrals.
  • Ask on social media for a good web designer. From the replies and testimonials, do a search and find their contact information. Contact them and ask them to come and network as described in the bullet point above.
  • Do you get phone calls from salespeople and vendors? Tell them you would like to introduce them to some business people who can help them get referrals. Invite them to network.
  • Do you get mail, both emails and snail mail from people advertising and soliciting for business? Contact them and offer to introduce them to your referral team. Tell them you don't currently have anyone in your group to pass referrals to.

Get the idea? It's all about having an inviting mindset. For instance, recently a BNI member was pumping gas, and next to him was a person in a truck with a sign on the truck for his business. The BNI Member started a conversation with him and asked him about his business. Guess what? The BNI Member invited the person to their BNI meeting and they attended. Are you looking for opportunities to invite?

So why do you want to invite visitors to your chapter meeting?

  • Visitors are consumers. As business owners, we are all looking to get in front of new people. Visitors can use the products and services of the chapter members. So when you meet someone new, rather than trying to sell to them, invite them to come and network. It's all about Givers Gain. They come to your meeting. They not only get to hear about what you do and the other members, but also they have an opportunity to present their business.
  • Visitors add energy to the meeting.
  • Visitors know people. I often hear from members that some of their biggest and best referrals come from visitors.
  • Visitors become members. We all want more referrals. The more members a chapter has, the more referrals will be passed.


Click Here to watch a short video of Dr. Ben McDowell telling about how he learned to invite with some help and coaching from one of his fellow members, David Kapper.

It's up to every member to do their part. Don't be that member that sits back and expects everyone else to bring visitors. Everyone knows someone they can invite.

If you have questions about ACTIVATE or need help and support, reach out to your Support Director Consultant.

Here are some additional resources:


For previous articles refer to the Notably Green Blog.

And join the Facebook Group - Notably Green



Let me know if you have any questions and how I can be of help.  
 
To Your Success,

Annette Mason
Area Director Consultant
  
Please let me know of other topics you would like to know about that I can add to future newsletters. 

Sunday, February 7, 2021

Secret Formula for Success

 


There really is no secret.  You already have the formula.  It's just a matter of learning how to be more effective and efficient.

What I feel is the issue for most new members, is new members come into BNI thinking that BNI is going to be the Be All - End All for all of their networking and referrals. They think they are going to get a ton of referrals right out of the gate. The referrals are just going to fall out of the sky miraculously.  And they seem shocked to learn it's going to take some work on their part to either learn how to network effectively and efficiently and to un-learn past ways of networking that were ineffective.


I attended a webinar a few weeks ago and heard an interesting statistic from the presenter.  He said it's usually about the 3rd year that most BNI member's referrals and revenue really begins to kick in.  This was one of those Ah-Ha moments because most members aren't willing to give it that much time, must less do the work involved to get to that level.  We've always heard that members who renew their first year, usually remain members for 5+ years. But most new members give up and decide to leave about six months in when they have really not put forth the effort to be successful.  Most business coaches will tell you, it takes 3 to 5 years to have a profitable business.  Why would you think BNI is going to be an instant windfall of referrals and business?

So what is the Secret Formula?
Members who are Green report 6 to 8 times more revenue than those members in Red or Grey.

You see, BNI tracks everything and according to the statistics, the Power of One is the standard for success.  But, it's not just about going through the motions of doing the activities, it's learning how to do them the right way and that takes time and practice.  You've heard the phrase 'practice makes perfect.'  When you're trying to learn a new skill, how many times does it take before you get it right?  And once you get it right, you have to keep doing it correctly in order to achieve the results you desire.

So let's go through each one of these and break it down as to how to get more effective and efficient.  

  • CEU - Chapter Education Unit.  Learn More to Earn More.  Another interesting statistic.  Those members with higher CEUs typically receive more referrals and have higher TYFCB. BNI is a marketing system that teaches us how to build relationships in order to grow our business.  BNI provides all types of learning opportunities via websites, podcasts, webinars, BNI Business Builders, Advanced Trainings, Monday MugsLive Help Friday, books, etc.  It's up to us as members to take advantage of these trainings.  So where do you start?  Start with the basics.  Even if you've been a member for a while, it's always good to go back to the beginning for a refresher. It used to be that every member was asked to complete MSP, Member Success Program, every year when they renewed. Did you complete MSP, Member Success Program?  It always helps to have a refresher of the basics. Did you attend the New Member Next Steps Webinar?  What about the Passport to Success Program?  Did you complete yours?  Do you have a Mentor? Talk with your Chapter's Mentor Coordinator and get assigned to someone who would be willing to mentor you. Ask yourself, where do you need help?  Is it more referrals?  How to improve your weekly presentation?  How to improve your spotlight presentation?  How to invite visitors?  Search for these subjects on BNI Business BuilderBNIPodcast.comBNIPowerofOne.com. Seek out the people who do these things well and have a 1-2-1 and ask them for their tips.  These members could be in other chapters. Seek them out.
  • 1-2-1s = More Referrals. In order to receive referrals, other members have to get to know you, like you, trust you, and want to help you.  How do you achieve that?  1-2-1s. And not just one 1-2-1.  It takes meeting with other members over and over to really get to know them and their business and learning how you can help them find referrals.  Yes, the BNI philosophy is 'Givers Gain.'  We have to give in order to receive. It also takes learning how to do an effective one to one.  You see a 1-2-1 in BNI is not just a 'coffee chat.'  It is not a 'one and done.' To truly have an effective one to one takes some preparation.  It starts with completing and exchanging your GAINS profile with the member you are meeting with prior to your 1-2-1.  You can also use the One to One Planner.  I was just talking with a long time BNI member the other day about this subject and he said, "I have a one to one with someone about twice a month, because it means 2 to 3 referrals each time." This is the 'secret sauce' for receiving and giving referrals.  It is the developing of the relationships with strategic referral partners with whom you can leverage referrals for each other. Your 1-2-1s can also be with other members from other chapters as well as with visitors. And by all means, have a 1-2-1 with your Director Consultant and pick their brain on what it takes to be successful in BNI.
  • Referrals - Members are expected to pass 1 referral a week. If members are doing 1-2-1s consistently every week and learning what to listen and look for, it becomes second nature to find referrals. When they take it to another level and get proactive rather than reactive, they learn how to start conversations in order to uncover referrals for their fellow members. The other way to bring referrals to your fellow members is to invite visitors and make introductions.  Listen to your fellow members.  Who are they looking to meet?  Ask your contacts if they know someone in that industry and invite them to network. Use this reason for the invitation, is that you have someone in your referral group who is looking to meet someone in their profession for the purpose of passing referrals.  That introduction could turn into business.  And to receive referrals, a member needs to build relationships and build their creditability.  So, what does a Power of One score of Red or Grey say to your fellow members? How comfortable do you feel passing a referral to a member who has a Red or Grey Power of One score?
  • Attendance - 80% of Success is Showing Up BNI is not the like other networking organizations.  You are not just a name of a roster.  Another interesting statistic, is those with low absences get more referrals. To get results from BNI you not only have to show up every week, but you also have to participate.  Because how you show up, is how your fellow members think you show up everywhere.  What does that mean you ask?  Do you show up late?  Or are you on time or better yet early?  Your fellow BNI member does not want to give a referral of his best client to someone who can't even get to a meeting on time.  Are you prepared each week? Part of showing up each week is to train your sales team on how to find you referrals.  Do you have a good weekly presentation prepared that describes that perfect referral for you?  Perhaps it's a story of a client you recently worked with.  Or a testimony from a client you helped. Or an interesting piece of industry information your fellow members could use to help find you a referral.  Participation also includes being engaged in the meeting.  Focusing on the speaker, not multi-tasking, texting, etc.  And since we are on Zoom calls, are you on camera, in good lighting, etc.  Dressed for a business meeting?  Have a good setting or a virtual background?  No distractions?  And back to participation - What other duties have you taken on in your chapter?  Part of building creditability is being visible and volunteering to help in needed areas. This helps to build trust and shows you are a dependable reliable person.


You see, you have had the Secret Formula for Success in BNI all along.  
It is just learning how to execute the formula efficiently and effectively 
to be successful.

If you or your chapter needs help and support, reach out to your Support Director Consultant.

 
To Your Success,
 



Annette Mason
Area Director Consultant

Saturday, January 9, 2021

Visitors Fix Everything

 


"Visitors fix everything!" ~ Cathy Barbieri

How do Visitors fix everything?

Do you want to grow your business?
Do you want more referrals?

Visitors are the Answer

- Visitors are prospects.  
- Prospects can turn into Customers/Referrals and Members
- Customers/Referrals/Members = Revenue $$

Why Invite Visitors?

1. Visitors bring energy - They are eager to network. Excited to meet new prospects. Members see new prospects and therefore they present a better weekly presentation which equal more energy for your meeting.
2. Visitors bring possible referrals - Many members report receiving their best referrals form visitors. Randy Amerson with the BAG Chapter says that the largest referral, revenue wise, he has ever received came from a visitor.
3. Visitors increase the revenue for most chapters by about 20 to 30%. They refer themselves and/or others to the members. Each visitor is said to be worth $1000 to $1500.  So, when you invite visitors, someone from your chapter stands to benefit.  That could be you.
4. Visitors become members. Most everyone was invited to attend a BNI meeting by a BNI Member.  This contributes to the growth of the chapter.  More members mean more referrals which means more revenue for members.
5. Visitors refer other possible members. They may not wish to become a member, but they may know someone to refer who would be a good fit.
6. Attrition happens - You can expect to lose members from time to time in a BNI chapter. It can be for different reasons. Job Changes, relocation, some just can't honor the commitment, and maybe even retirement... the list goes on. Visitors are the life blood of your chapter. Visitors are where new members are found.
7. Visitors make good subs. Not all visitors will become members, but some would like the opportunity to be invited back. It's always good to keep a list of the visitors so that when you need a sub, you have several to contact.
8. Invite visitors for introductions. Listen to your fellow members weekly presentations.  Who do they want to meet?  Then be on the lookout for that industry or person and invite them to your BNI meeting.  That introduction could turn into a referral and closed business.
9. Building Relationships - It is always great when someone you've invited is interested and available to accompany you to a BNI meeting. But what if they can't make it? It's still good that you asked. It's building the relationship. Networking isn't only achieved when the initial goal is met; just making a contact is important, as you never know what will manifest in the future. Extending an invitation kindles your relationships to all the people you've invited, even if they weren't able to attend. So, when you're contacting and/or following up with clients, vendors, etc. extend an invitation to your BNI meeting and/or ask 'Who do you know?'
10. Power of One and personal creditability - It is a part of membership to invite at least one visitor per month. When your fellow members look at the Power of One report, that report speaks to each member's creditability according to their score.  Those members in green earn 8 times more than those in red. And being in grey, is just not OK. Do you refer business to those members in red or grey?


So, we've gone over the Why, now let's talk about Who to invite.

ABC's and D for inviting - 

A = Attitude - When considering inviting, you as a member needs a Giver's Gain attitude and Mindset.  You're doing it to help the invitee and your chapter and in turn it will help you. And one of the criteria of an invitee is for them to have a good attitude. If we recognize that visitors bring business (an average of $1k closed business each) and energy to the chapter meeting, then anyone with a good attitude makes a good visitor. Period. 

B = Business Owners - You want to invite Business Owners who are looking to grow their business. Who do you know who is looking for more business?  Do you get phone calls for solicitation? Junk mail? Advertisements?  Signage, i.e. in neighbors yards, on vehicles, billboards, etc.  See posts on Social Media?  Invite them to your BNI meeting and introduce them to your fellow referral partners.  When someone is trying to sell you something, say something like, "Would you be interested in meeting (# of members in your chapter) other business people who might be interested in your product/service?"  If they say yes, then invite them to your BNI meeting.

C = Clients and Customers - What do your clients and customers do for a living?  Are they business owners? Strike up a conversation and find out.  And of course ask if they know of any business owners who are looking for more referrals and who would be interested in attending a networking meeting.

D = Deliberate - Who do you need to meet? Who would make a good referral partner for you? Who would be a good addition to your contact sphere?  Who would be a good Power Team member?  Ask everyone you know if they know someone in that industry.  Again, you are helping your chapter and yourself as well as the invitee.

How do you invite?

The simplest and easiest method is to use the GRIP method.

G - Are you looking to grow your business?
R - Do you depend on referrals to grow your business?
I - Would you be interested in meeting other business professionals who help each other by passing referrals?
P - Give them the particulars for your meeting.

Ask, but don't give out to much information - 
- Do not use the word 'join.'  You are inviting them to come and network.
- Do not mention weekly meetings.  You are inviting them to attend one meeting to network.
- Do not mention any fees.  You are inviting them to come and network. It is free to attend. Free opportunity for them to advertise and market their business.

How to invite on Social Media - 
- Monitor groups where people are looking for referrals and when you see a person or company referred several times with good testimonials, send a private message - 'I saw that you received great reviews. Are you looking for more referrals? If yes -
'I'd like to invite you to a group I just recently help get started in [YOUR CITY] to focus on strategizing word of mouth referrals.  If you have time on [DATE AND TIME OF YOUR MEETING], I'd love to invite you to a free virtual networking session! There will be men and women from different classifications who all are looking to pass exclusive referrals to one another! If you are interested, I would love to get you registered. There is no obligation and it's completely free so if anything, you'll get free advertising for the day!

You can also make a post on a social media platform, i.e. Facebook, Alignable, LinkedIn, etc. and ask for a certain industry for your contact sphere, power team, etc.

Inviting is a numbers game. Not everyone is going to say yes. You are going to get some nos. Sometimes you have to ask several times before they will actually attend. Just like you wouldn't stop seeking business for yourself, you want to keep seeking guests and visitors for your BNI meeting. It will add to you and your chapter's bottom line as well as increase your creditability with your fellow members.

If you or your chapter needs help and support, reach out to your Support Director Consultant.

Let me know if you have any questions and how I can be of help.  
 
To Your Success,
 



Annette Mason
Area Director Consultant

Saturday, December 12, 2020

Reflecting on 2020 and Looking ahead to the Road to 2021

 


Whew!!  I think we can all agree, we are glad to have survived 2020!  For some, it's been great and for others not so much, but we've all had to deal with some new challenges and opportunities.

Some recent stats as we close out 2020 - 
End of November - BNI has passed over 10.6 Million in Referrals and 14.6 Billion is USD TYFCB.  26% of BNI Members now have never experienced an in-person meeting.  First-Year Retention is up and so is Retention overall for all of BNI!

So as we close out 2020 and look to 2021, what are your goals for the new year?  This is the question I've been asking the groups that I'm visiting and working with.  I've heard everything from lose 25 lbs. to hire and train some new people because of increased business.  What are your goals for 2021?

Looking back and reflecting on the year past and giving some serious thought to where you want to be this time next year is a good way to start with a plan to hit the ground running the first of the year.

What is your method of setting goals and making a plan?  Do you have some BHAGs?  Stretch Goals?

I believe you need to have a BHAG to reach for.  Even if you fall short you'll be a lot further along than if you didn't set a goal at all or only set a goal you were somewhat sure you could achieve.

Setting a BHAG goal takes a lot of guts.  Sometimes what we think are BHAGs if broken down into bite sizes pieces and applying some effort, we find are well within reach.  That was my experience very early on in my career in sales.  I was given a challenge and thought, No Way could I do that.  Someone looked at my production and said, if I kept doing what I was currently doing consistently and added just one more element to the equation, I could achieve what I had thought at first was an impossible achievement.  And I did and was awarded a trip to Hawaii.  One of the main elements of achieving that goal was deciding to take action plus I REALLY wanted to go to Hawaii.

See, we can set all the goals we want to and make a plan, but if we don't take action and work the plan then we'll never meet the goal.  It's like getting very clear about what you're looking for, be it more clients, more referrals, more sales, more visitors at your BNI meeting, etc. and asking everyone you know.  If you don't ask 'Are you interested in growing your business and meeting other business professionals.....'  Guess what, the answer will always be no.  You're defeated before you ever start.

I heard a very good presentation the other day by Kip Kent, an Executive Director in Utah who was quoting some stats for successful BNI members as to their referrals, TYFCB, Visitors, new members sponsored, etc.  And what he found in his research was interesting.  Those with the highest CEUs typically had the most referrals, higher TYFCB, more visitors and sponsored more new members.  Why is that you wonder?  They are smart people.  They know they don't know everything, but they are willing to learn, and that is exactly what they do.  They learn how to be more effective and efficient in their networking and leverage BNI to grow their business.

They say that new members typically increase their bottom line their first year with BNI by about 20% and then it goes up from there.  Why?  They learn how to work smarter.  They work to train their fellow members on how to find quality referrals for them.  I would wager if you talked to most any BNI member who has been with BNI for 5 years or more, they would tell you that 70% or more of their business is attributed to BNI.  

So what is your plan for 2021?  Are you willing to learn how to be more efficient and effective?  If you're coachable BNI can certainly help every member meet their BHAGS.

Here's to a very Successful 2021 to you and your business.  And I would love to hear what your BHAGS are.

If you or your chapter needs help and support, reach out to your Support Director Consultant.

 
To Your Success,
 



Annette Mason
Area Director Consultant

Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Is Your Glass Half Full or Half Empty?

 


So, how is it going for you?  For your chapter?  We are one month into the new Leadership term.  By now most Chapters have set their goals and devised their plan and strategies as to how they will meet their goals and have introduced them to their members.  Do you know what your chapter goals are?  Have you set your BNI Goals?  What activities will you need to do to meet your goals?  Do you know the basic Power of One activity to be successful in BNI?  Do you do these activities effectively?

In talking to various members, there are some who are still struggling and/or stalled.  I was recently asked why some chapters/members are thriving, still adding members, and passing business.

Here are my thoughts:

I believe it has to do with the overall attitude and culture of the chapter and the members.  While I know having a positive attitude can't fix everything, you have to have a positive in order to move forward.  It's like putting fuel in the gas tank or plugging your electric car into the recharging station.  You're not going anywhere without any fuel.  It's not wondering if the glass is half full or half empty, but finding a way to fill it back up.
Attitude Scale

Which type of person do you prefer to be around?  Someone who is upbeat, positive, and making things happen?  Or Negative Nancy who's always finding excuses for why things are the same oh same oh and it's not going to change until....(fill in the blank, which doesn't matter, because when the blank gets filled, there will be another excuse).


Or are you Realistic Rita?  Hmmmm..... Yes, Realistic Rita would point out all the statistics and why things are the way they are.  I'm not saying not to be realistic.  What I am saying is, things will not improve for people until they decide they're going to improve and put some action towards the improvements.

The same is with BNI.  Many swear by BNI and have 'drank the Cool-Aid.'  And there are many who say it doesn't work.  News Flash....BNI works if you do.  What BNI is ... is a system.  A marketing system.  A way to generate referrals and grow a member's business.  The system has to be followed if it is to work.  And guess what?  There are no shortcuts.  They've been working on this system for over 35 years.  And anything new....it's tested before it's implemented to the greater BNI membership.

Now, you say you do the activities, but still don't get any results.  Why is that?  Like any successful business person or successful athletic would do, you have to perfect your skills.  Learn to do it better to be effective and efficient.  Then it works and becomes enjoyable.  Do you follow any sports?  Ever wonder why they continuously practice?  Or go through drills over and over again?  To learn how to execute flawlessly.  To develop muscle memory to do the right things when needed.  

Are you in an industry that you have to take courses each year to maintain your license or accreditation?  Things change.  We have to keep up to date.  


So, where are you?  Are you on-hold, waiting to go back to in-person meetings?  Or on fire?  It doesn't matter if we're meeting in person or on Zoom, the basics of BNI are still the same.  And if the basic principles of BNI are implemented and followed, you will be successful.  

The point is, the system works and BNI Works if you work the system.

If you or your chapter needs help and support, reach out to your Support Director Consultant.

 
To Your Success,
 



Annette Mason
Area Director Consultant

The Importance of BNI Member Success Program

 This article was written by Sam Williamson a BNI Member from New Zealand. Online BNI Member Success Program (MSP) Training 1 November 2019 ...