Benson Campbell, BNI Devon and Cornwall

Date:               23rd August 2021

Title: What sort of a BNI member would you want to be?

BNI is the world’s largest referral networking organization and at the last count could proudly claim to have over 10,000 chapters across 74 countries. It takes the very best of local business networking and turns it in to a global hub and is responsible for passing well over $10billion a year between its members … which is as you know, pretty good.

BNI Devon and Cornwall is one of those regions and currently has over six of chapters stretching across the two counties. Members of these individual chapters pass a tremendous amount of business between each other but also across the region and of course the rest of the world. The truth is members tend to view their involvement in BNI as being a business development investment and opportunity. 

But if you were considering becoming a member, let’s look at what type of member would you want to be, because of course, not everyone’s the same.

First up we have the Trade. We have a particular member down here in the South-West who’s been with us for over seven years now. He runs a successful building firm and since becoming a BNI member has pretty much managed to keep his order book completely full with referrals and business from other members with the group. 

He secures building contracts with his fellow members, colleagues of those members and even family and friends of those members. He views his membership as a business development tool and the subsequent cost of that membership as an investment. 

As with any investment, this guy wants a decent return on it and the truth is, his return is significant. He even uses the group to enable him to offer additional services by bringing other trades in alongside his own team, which means that he’s able to take on bigger, more complex job and his reputation grows.

This demonstrates just how important BNI is in pre-loading your trade book. The question is, do you want to do that with your trade business?

Next up with have The Professionals, people like accountants, lawyers, personal protection specialists, insurance brokers and financial advisors. Let’s take the first on that list … accountants. 

We have one accountant that’s a member in the Devon and Cornwall region and he joined one of our chapters specifically to help support him set up his own accountancy practice. 


Life in BNI

Benson Campbell

16th October 2023

Life in Business Network International (BNI) is a unique professional journey marked by collaboration, support, and the philosophy of "Givers Gain." Individuals who engage in BNI often find themselves immersed in a community of like-minded professionals committed to each other's success. Here's a glimpse into what life might be like in BNI:

1. Weekly Meetings:

In the world of BNI, a typical week starts with a chapter meeting. These gatherings are not just about exchanging business cards but are dynamic sessions where members actively engage with one another. Members have the opportunity to showcase their businesses through presentations, share success stories, and seek input from their peers.

2. Structured Networking:

BNI emphasises structured networking, where members are organised into specific categories or professions to ensure diversity within the group. This structure encourages members to develop a deep understanding of each other's businesses, fostering a strong foundation for referrals.

3. Givers Gain Philosophy:

At the heart of BNI is the "Givers Gain" philosophy, where members are encouraged to give referrals and support to others with the belief that, in doing so, they will receive in return. This principle creates a culture of generosity, trust, and collaboration.

4. Building Relationships:

Life in BNI revolves around building genuine relationships. Members understand that business is not just about transactions; it's about establishing connections and partnerships that go beyond the professional realm. Personal relationships often develop, and trust becomes a cornerstone of these interactions.

5. Referral Marketing:

Referral marketing is a significant aspect of life in BNI. Members actively seek opportunities to refer business to their peers within the group. This results in a steady flow of qualified leads and a network that acts as an extension of each member's sales team.

6. Professional Development:

BNI is not just about getting referrals; it's also about personal and professional development. Members often find themselves growing as leaders, public speakers, and effective networkers through the training and mentoring opportunities provided within the BNI framework.

7. Celebrating Success:

Achievements, both big and small, are celebrated within the BNI community. Whether it's hitting a business milestone or securing a significant referral, members cheer each other on, creating a positive and supportive environment.

8. Community Engagement:

BNI chapters often engage with the broader community through charity events, sponsorships, and outreach programs. This community-centric approach not only benefits the local area but also enhances the reputation of BNI members as socially responsible professionals.

9. Lifelong Connections:

Life in BNI results in lifelong connections. Members often speak of the lasting impact BNI has on their professional and personal lives. The relationships formed within the chapter become a valuable asset that extends well beyond business transactions.

In essence, life in BNI is a journey of collaboration, support, and continuous growth, where professionals come together to amplify each other's success and contribute to a thriving community of like-minded individuals.

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