As we host 3 regular business networking events in Bordon, I spend quite a bit of time inviting local business owners to these free events. Lots of people come, but a few say that business networking isn't really for them or isn't a great fit for their type of business.
I think you'd be surprised at how useful attending a networking session can be, whatever business you're in. And how welcoming attendees are when you're a new face at a networking event.
You won't be Billy no mates at one of our business networking events!
If the reason you're avoiding business networking is because you're not entirely comfortable with putting yourself out there, don't worry! Our events Bordon Small Biz Networking hosted at SiGNAL, and the Bordon Business Exchange at the Royal Exchange in Lindford are friendly, easy going affairs and attract local businesses of varying size and fields.
We have plenty of sole traders and freelancers, established and start ups, who appreciate the opportunity to meet other people in a similar position to them. And micro and small businesses who want to collaborate with other local companies and build the Bordon business community.
My advice is to register online for any of our events, and try it for yourself! My job is to ensure you're given a warm welcome and introduced to some of the other attendees, so you won't be Billy no mates. If you're particularly interested in making connections with specific types of businesses, for example if you're looking to find a reliable local supplier or get business support, I'll hook you up with any attendee who can help.
While business networking involves plenty of chat with other business owners, some events also include a talk or short presentation designed to highlight opportunities within the local community or provide some business inspiration or advice. At the Bordon Business Exchange our monthly networking event in Lindford, we invite all sorts of interesting speakers including other local business people and representatives from Whitehill and Bordon community groups and associations. If you're new to networking these talks can give you a bit of a respite from talking to other attendees!
Business networking is beneficial for all kinds of different businesses
Another reason people say business networking isn't for them, is that they don't think it's appropriate for their business. Many people think that events will be full of accountants, solicitors, business consultants etc. and that they're just going to get the hard sell.
Again, this isn't really my experience here in Bordon. While it's true that many professional services companies do attend regularly, we also get a great mix of trades, creative businesses, health & wellness practitioners and other local business owners. That's because business networking events are not just about selling your services or products to other attendees, they're also about learning from each other, providing advice and recommendations, collaborating and being part of a supportive business community.
So I think you'll find that you'll get something out of attending, whatever business you're in.
Ready to try business networking for yourself? If you're running a business in Bordon or surrounding areas our networking events are free. All we ask is that you register in advance so we know you're coming.