Business Networking SA will offer local businesses hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic a much-needed resource to keep trading by providing business owners the opportunity to network with like-minded people within a virtual community, find potential business leads, and access expert business advice.
While the UK faces its own challenges during this crisis my heart remains with my fellow South Africans and their unique circumstances. Watching the economic fallout in my birth country has been devastating and I wanted to make a contribution. Getting fellow business owners together and giving them a platform to connect and network to revive their businesses seemed like a great place to start
An Old Dog Learns New Tricks
Moving to a new country and having absolutely no business network has been a very humbling experience. It makes you realise just how much you take having a network for granted. There is no way I could have built the base I now have in the UK without being part of formal networking groups.
Rebuilding my own business from scratch in the UK showed me just how powerful networking can be. I’m not certain why, but formal networking has never been big in South Africa. I think it’s time for that to change. I have extracted key learnings from the various groups I am a member of in the UK to develop a best practice model for Business Networking SA that I hope will resonate with business owners in South Africa.
Formal business networking has a proven success rate and is widely used globally. According to BNI, one of the larger networking groups, their 270 000 members shared 12.2 million business referrals, which equated to $16.7 billion in income generation.
It is devastating to hear every week of yet another example of people losing their businesses and/or having to let staff go. Life unusual calls for business unusual and I think it’s time for South African business owners to try a new approach to sales and marketing. Building new networks in a group where everyone is committed to helping each other is a no-brainer.
Your Launch Invitation
The first meeting and launch event is on 6 Aug 2020 from 4 – 6pm on Zoom. It’s free to attend but spaces are limited so please book your place now – and please share this invitation with all the business owners you know.
All the details of the different groups around the country and membership options are available on the website. Meetings will be held virtually every two weeks and each meeting will have an interesting speaker as well as networking opportunities.
I really hope that Business Networking SA will make a difference and I would be hugely grateful for your help and support in getting the word out.