As we celebrate another graduating class, we thought we’d give them some good advice to help them turn their dreams of business success into reality. We recently caught up with Ivan Misner, the founder of BNI (Business Network International), the world’s largest business network. Ivan was good enough to agree to an interview where we could zero in on this universal challenge. He gave us some real jewels.
M&B: You’re the creator of the world’s largest business network. Can you tell us why you thought there would be a market for such a concept?
Ivan: I didn’t. I mean I’d like to tell you that I had this vision of an international organization, but the truth is I needed referrals for my consulting practice. I hoped my friends would be willing to refer me, and I was willing to refer them. So, we got together as a group and started passing referrals to each other. So BNI exists because it’s a classic example of necessity being the mother of invention.
But here’s the piece I didn’t understand at the time. I didn’t know how to get referrals. I thought that since everybody I brought into my first networking group was older and more successful than me that they knew how to network. But, when we met, they were asking “OK, what do we do?” And that’s when I realized, no one knew how to network effectively.
— Leer en www.entrepreneur.com/article/314690