Welcome to the Champions Chapter of SoCal BNI!

The Champions Chapter of SoCal BNI was founded in April of 2004 and has grown to 32 members! We meet at the Meridian Club in Fullerton, California on Tuesday mornings at 7:30 AM. We would love for you to visit our chapter and consider joining our very diverse and successful group of professionals. For further information, please contact the President, Allen C. Buchanan at 714.564.7104 or email me at abuchanan@lee-associates.com

Saturday, October 23, 2010

What is the most effective way for a BNI chapter president to motivate members to bring visitors and grow the chapter?

This question was posed by Pablo Scodellaro. Pablo is a bookkeeper from Sydney, Australia. I believe the subsequent comments from BNI members around the world warranted posting. When you read these comments, you realize how small the world has become and how social media connects us! I hope that you enjoy the comments and learn from the advice.

From Deepak Garg, an ophthalmologist from India:
"I don't know if there is one best way, but i would say that many ways are to be adapted to enable members to get more visitors. We at our chapter give weekly awards to the person who gets the maximum visitors for the previous four weeks. Also we have a hot seat programme, we write down everyone's name on a chits of papers and pick up, lets say five and these five members then have to bring visitors by hook or by crook in the next BNI meeting."

Allen C. Buchanan, a Commercial Real Estate Broker from Orange County, California:

I believe the best way to motivate the group is by example. I just began my president's term last week and have as a personal goal to have at least one visitor per week. Also, if your chapter has an active visitor host and open categories and attends chapter success forums, the region will send visitors to your chapter. We have had great success with Stack Days as a way to invite. Lastly, if I receive a cold call from a vendor, I ask them to attend my BNI meeting. If they are serious about building their business, they will see the benefit.

From Marty Morris, a printer from Ireland:

"Like Allen, i too have just started a term as Chapter Director (President), I believe the most effective way to promote the invitation of visitors is by PERSONAL EXAMPLE. I have seen this work in the past, and it is a great motivator for the chapter members, particularly, when the end of the month stats become available, to all of the chapter members."

Marty Morris Chapter Director, Castle Chapter, Dublin, Ireland.

From Frank Roe, a business mentor from Lancaster, UK:

"I took on the Membership Co-ordinator role for my Chapter from last week. We are working on a number of factors, personal example being a very good one. Our active Visitor Hosts and Visitor Orientators have worked closely with the previous Chapter Director and now with his successor in helping to find and bring in visitors. Both Chapters in our town are combining to host a new format "information and recruitment" event next month. We are concentrating on filling the open categories in both Chapters. Our 6 months goals include achieving target membership numbers. This event is being well supported by our Acting Regional Director and Assistant Director."

Frank Roe, Membership Co-ordinator, Redwulf Chapter, Kendal, South Lakeland.

From Dave Clark, a business consultant from Chattanooga, Tennessee:

"I will ask a question for all. How do you attract new customers? For us (A to Z Printing and Marketing), we bring a new visitor about once a month. You market your company, well BNI is "our company, sales team, biz partner, mentors and support network". Please email us at salesa2z@volfirst.net for some marketing Ideas and I will share some of our marketing tips."

From Lisa J. Raymond, a graphic designer from Phoenix, Arizona:

"I agree with Allen, leading by example. As the current VP for our chapter, I've taken postcards provided by BNI and filled out our chapter's information and my name; then, when I meet someone looking for a networking group, I hand them a postcard, inviting them to come join us for breakfast. We also have a regional coordinator helping the chapters fill positions by request of each chapter. For example, if our chapter is looking for a realtor (and ironically, we are), I e-mail a request to this coordinator asking them to send realtors looking for a chapter toward our group. We're just trying this for the first time this week, and we may have a couple of guests this next week! Our Education Coordinator is also challenging us with visitors by scheduling a monthly "visitor day", targeting one industry rather than three.

Remember to cite the number of referrals passed, how many are golden and explain to visitors what a golden referral is, and how much referral dollars your chapter has done thus far.

Last thought: there is no "cost" to joining any networking organization; rather, it is an investment toward the health and well-being of their business. Try breaking down the investment into a daily or weekly number so visitors can easily see how little investment it takes, but the overall impact and ROI for them would be substantial!"

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