I’m gonna hug you unless you stop me!
Welcome to the 13th annual “International Networking Week®”. During this first week in February, we at BNI and other organizations around the world celebrate networking worldwide. “International Networking Week” is an initiative of BNI created 13 years ago. This year, we are asking you to help us to spread One Million Thank Yous all around the world. Therefore, please provide gratitude and appreciation for those who helped us to grow our businesses this week. I would appreciate sharing this video with your chapter members as the “Educational Moment” this week. Thank you.
With gratitude, I believe, comes stronger connections. Think about those who’ve helped you throughout your journey. Have you thanked them? Well during “International Networking Week”, we invite you to do so. We all have people who are in our story, people who have helped us in some way. This is the perfect time to reach out and tell them “thank you” for what they have contributed to your life and to your business.
Identify those people and give them “The Gift of Recognition”. You can even thank someone at your BNI meeting or at a networking event this week. Demonstrate your gratitude for the things that they have done for you. Therefore, you can also consider sending a letter or thanking them on social media using the hashtags #BNIthankyou and #INW2020 with your posts. The truth is that the goodwill that you demonstrate will draw others to you just like a magnet.
With gratitude, I want to begin this week by thanking “YOU”. With your passionate commitment to networking, BNI is continuing to impact and enhance lives all around the world and I appreciate you. Furthermore, feel free to share in the comments about someone that you appreciate and thank them here for something that they have done in your life.
In conclusion, I want to say thank you to the following BNI National Directors for writing guests blogs for International Networking Week about “gratitude” this week:
BNI’s 35th anniversary is this week! The official kick-off of the first BNI group was January 8th, 1985.
35 years ago, I put together about 20 people in a small coffee shop in Arcadia, California for the very first meeting of BNI® (Business Network International). Furthermore, the original organization, “The Network”, was run from a small bedroom that was converted into an office inside my house in La Verne, California. I recognized back then that I had struck a chord within the business community. We don’t teach networking in colleges and universities anywhere in the world, and business people are hungry for referrals. They simply had no viable way to generate them regularly back in 1985.
In light of BNI’s 35th anniversary, I share the story of BNI’s surprisingly accidental beginnings. Furthermore, I open up about my astonishment at just how successful BNI has become. Please watch my special 35th anniversary message video by clicking here.
A must-watch video for BNI members worldwide! Please encourage all your BNI members to watch this video by playing the video during your BNI meeting this week as the “Purpose and Overview of BNI” and by posting this video’s YouTube URL on your BNI National, Regional, and chapter Social media pages too.
It has been an incredible 35 years. I am humbled by what BNI has become. Its impact on the world of business and on individual lives continues to spread. I feel so proud of how the Givers Gain® philosophy has expanded around the world and I can never get enough of hearing about people’s experiences in the organization.
I look forward to many more years as part of BNI and hope to see most of you along the ride.
It’s almost the New Year! Since it will be 2020, I thought it would be perfect to talk about 2020 vision. Please watch this video.
There is an old phrase that hindsight has 2020 vision. While that may be true, but I also believe that foresight can have 2020 vision. The challenge is, you actually have to think about your future. Really spend time and think about it, even if it’s just a few hours. Give some thought to your future. When I talk about setting goals, I find that people are a little like Bobblehead Ivan here. Yea, yea, yea, I need to set goals. Yea, you need to set goals. Goals are just a vision of where you want to go.
Every year for the last 40+ years (yes, even before I started BNI), I have taken time during this period of the year to reflect. I start by looking at the past year and see how it played out according to my plan. Where it worked, I celebrated. Where it didn’t work, I analyzed why. More importantly, I contemplated how I could make it work.
Then, I did my real vision making. I thought about what I wanted to achieve during the next year and then three to five years out. Finally, I gave consideration to where I would be 10 years out. I started this process when I was in my early 20’s. In fact, I actually created a 40-year plan for myself back then. You can see that plan on the blog post listed below:
Truly, anything past five years is an educated guess. I get that. But it’s also something else. It’s a game plan. It’s a vision for where you want to go. Your one year plan should be really specific. Your 3-5 year plan should be strategic. And anything longer is highly strategic (which you’ll see if you read my 40-year plan). You can’t hit a target you don’t aim at. Create a target. That’s the vision. Take aim, that’s the action.
Do those three things this year and then do me a favor. Mark your calendar for the end of 2020 and post a message about how this changed your life. I’m going to be looking for it.
If anyone wants to comment now about your 2020 vision, I’d love to see it. I’m Ivan Misner and this is 2020.
The 2020 International Networking Week ® is an initiative of BNI®. It is an opportunity for business owners to show appreciation for their valued customers and contacts from networking.
Expressing gratitude completes the feeling of connection. Many people in your life have helped you in one way or another. Therefore, have you thanked them? Consider sending a letter to someone telling them what their actions meant to you, even if—especially if—it happened long ago. It costs little or nothing. Furthermore, it almost always follows suit that they will demonstrate their gratitude for what you do.
When you show an interest in others by noticing the good things they’ve done; they will be drawn to you like a magnet. Therefore, it will accelerate the relationship-building process and enhance their overall impression of you.”
In conclusion, the goal of International Networking Week is to celebrate the key role that networking plays in the development and success of businesses across the world. Networking events are being held globally to celebrate International Networking Week. For more information about these international events during the first week of February or to promote your local networking event on our 2020 International Networking Week website please see: internationalnetworkingweek.com
Today is Thanksgiving in the United States. There is no time like the present to pause and acknowledge the people that we are grateful for. Please click here to watch my personal video message about Thanksgiving then take a moment today to show appreciation for and to return gratitude to others.
I really appreciate you taking the time to watch this video and if it gets you thinking about what you’re thankful for. Therefore, I would really love for you to share your thoughts in the comment below. Gratefulness can be contagious so don’t be shy–share what you’re appreciative of no matter how big or small it may be. Thanks! 🙂
Are you planning to do what makes you happy someday when you have more time, money, or freedom?
What if someday never happens? As the Buddha said, “The thing is, we think we have time.” Sam Horn is a woman on a mission about not waiting for SOMEDAY … and this is her manifesto. Her dad’s dream was to visit all the National Parks when he retired. He worked six to seven days a week for decades. A week into his long-delayed dream, he had a stroke. Sam doesn’t want that to happen to you. She took her business on the road for a Year by the Water. During her travels, she asked people, “Do you like your life? Your job? If so, why? If not, why not?”
The surprising insights about what makes people happy or unhappy, what they’re doing about it (or not), and why…will inspire you to carve out time for what truly matters now, not later.
In this video, I share a story about a referral coincidence.
Understand the process of building relationships. It’s not the number of contacts you make that’s important, but the ones that you turn into lasting relationships. You’ll always get better results trying to deepen relationships with people you already know than starting relationships with strangers.
When it comes to networking, “luck” is where persistence meets opportunity. There is no coincidence about repeat referrals. It comes because every day you execute the activities relating to building referral relationships. Although it can’t be measured as easily as tracking cold-call ratios – the results are dramatic and almost never coincidental.
A misconception occurs when someone focuses on the referral rather than on the relationship that produced the referral. Networking is not about luck, it’s about relationships. No one person is likely to turn your business around. However, by building relationships with a diverse group of business professionals over time, they can make a difference together.
Your networking results are an indication that the system of building relationships is working. Not that these referrals were basically coincidences. It is no more coincidental that you receive referrals from the people in your network than it is that a fisherman casting a net catches fish. The fisherman concentrates on his action of casting the net, not the individual path of one of the fishes that swam into it. If he did base his decision on that one random fish he would quickly come to the conclusion that it was a coincidence.
Referrals are all around us. Are you paying attention? You are standing in the middle of a room full of referrals.
Referrals are all around us, it’s just that we’re not paying enough attention to what’s going on in order to identify them. You see, there’s a part of our brain that’s called the Reticular Activating System. It can be described as a filter between our conscious and our subconscious mind. Your subconscious screens out things you determine that aren’t important and it alerts you about things you think are important. Therefore, understanding how it works can be a great tool to recognize the daily referral opportunities surrounding us.
Watch the video now to learn not only about the Reticular Activating System but also about another powerful tool which I call the “Language of Referrals”. After watching the video, you will likely begin to remember times when your Reticular Activating System was in full effect. However, you just didn’t realize it at the time. You may also remember instances where you’ve clearly heard the language of referrals in conversations with people.
This month, Andy Lopata shares more of his networking tips which begin with the letter “V”
and more about Networking “V” previously in PART 1: click here
Please click below to see Andy’s playlist of his networking tips from A to Z.
By knowing why you are networking and what you want to achieve, it is possible to plan accordingly and get great, measurable results. If you have any comments about Andy’s “S” list or any additional “S” words about networking you will want to add to the list. please leave me a comment below.
As a business networking strategist, Andy Lopata works with companies on how to use networking tools to develop their businesses. Networking is not just about sales. Whether for lead generation, breaking down silos internally, recruitment and retention of top staff or developing future leaders, networks and collaboration have a key role to play. Andy works with clients to help recognize that role and put the strategy and skills in place to leverage it.
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