CEO Corner

Growing Forward Together

I am thankful that my work and personal travels have allowed me to experience many things and learn a great deal. One lesson that has truly resonated with me is: no matter our country, race, color, marital status, gender, religion, sexual orientation, age, ability, or politics: at our core, we are all the same. When we are young, we want the freedom to grow and pursue our dreams. When we are adults, we want to make an impact and build a better future for ourselves and our families. When we are older, we want to know that our lifetime of work was purposeful and will leave a positive legacy. These human desires are universal, and everyone should have an equal opportunity to achieve them fully. For its part, BNI always has – and always will – support all people in these worthy pursuits. I joined BNI because of its unique culture of caring and support that people have for one another. What other organization out there besides BNI brings so many people together across so many boundaries for such a productive purpose? BNI gives us a platform to be our best and to give of ourselves to others. We build meaningful relationships and extend our hand to help others grow and they in turn help and support us in the essence of Givers Gain®.


My goal is that BNI represents the beautiful diversity found in every country we serve. Beyond creating a more meaningful life experience, we know from Dr. Misner’s work that diverse networks are also more productive. Diversity is good business. For decades, BNI has encouraged diversity. We’ve implemented diversity training, diversified our marketing imagery and photos, carefully selected speakers from diverse backgrounds, written articles and created podcasts on diversity, mentored underprivileged students, incorporated our diversity statement into our leadership team training and communications, and launched a BNI Global Leadership Program to help advance diverse leadership at the organization. We are now expanding our mentorship program for underprivileged students, incorporating diversity into our strategic planning process, bolstering outreach to underserved communities, and augmenting support to the BNI Foundation which provides education & mentorship to kids in need. Click here to see a recent communication that Dr. Misner and I both shared broadly on Friday, June 12th. Together, we can do even more. If you have ideas, please share them with us by emailing diversity@bni.com. No idea is too big or too small.


The best solutions often start right in our community. You can help today. Today – right now – is a perfect time to diversify your chapter and extend a warm invitation to someone who may be different from you. Perhaps that invitation is an invitation to visit your BNI Chapter meeting this week. Perhaps that invitation is an invitation to visit a BNI Chapter meeting. Perhaps that simple invitation can change a life. Maybe the life that will be changed will be your own.

Together we can enhance the diversity of BNI and make a meaningful difference in all people’s lives.

At BNI, we are Growing Forward Together.

Onward!
Graham Weihmiller

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