Networking Tips

Easy is Never Best

Submitted by Patti Salvucci, BNI MA Executive Director


Growing up, my father passed along many life lessons that over the years have served me well. One in particular that I recall is “easy is never best.” I learned the hard way after many attempts to take the easy the road, that sometimes the extra effort made all the difference.

As Visitor Days are upon us I want to share a tip that enabled me to have 45 visitors show up that I personally invited when I launched my very first BNI Chapter 21 years ago.

First I did not rely on my fellow colleagues to invite. I invited like I was the only person inviting prospects. Second, I called every person I wanted to attend the meeting, even if I did not know them. I asked several people in the community that I knew who they knew was the best in their profession. Then I called that person and used their name, that “Joan” had shared they were the “best at what they did.”

I told them why I was calling and most importantly, I then asked permission if I could send them an invitation. Adding an initial phone call to vet their interest will help narrow down your list of interested prospects. Lastly, I followed up with every person, first to make sure they received the invitation and one more time the day before to confirm attendance. That’s it! The forming chapter had 85 visitors show up, of which 45 of those visitors I had personally invited! That first chapter, Metro 1, started off with 36 members and is a thriving chapter today!

Recap:

  1. Invite like you are the only person inviting
  2. Call every person and ask permission to send them an invitation
  3. Call to confirm they received the invitation
  4. Call the day before to confirm attendance

Take time to put in the extra effort and let me know your results. You’ll be glad you did and so will your chapter!

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