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

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

President's Weekly Letter, Champions SoCal BNI

My ask for the week is that you leave a comment on the blog, the facebook page, etc. The comments help increase our google presence.

So here are the highlights: (notice anything different?)

Action quotation " Happiness is not an accident, or something you wish for. Happiness is something you design." Your action for this week is to start designing your happiness!


Next week, June 7th is hat week. Every Champion will design their SMM around one, two, three, or a substitute hat. The first hat is a cowboy hat, the second hat is a camo University of Arkansas Razorback visor, the third is a straw Frank Sinatra fedora, OR you can choose a hat that closely represents your profession. IE: Greg Beck wears several hats? Robert Perez wears a moto helmet when he travels to our meetings. We have all see Rosanne's pink, blonde visor...should be epic!

June 14th is bring your sub day...more on this next week

June 21st. MSP Training at Meridian Club at 9:30 after our meeting. Sign up via the events calendar at http://www.socalbni.com

Evening Among the Champions....er Stars is October 7th! Rumor has it that the Champions have 20 committed so far and will be purchasing two tables this week. Kathy Penton has kindly agreed to be all things, Champion and Evening...more to come!

Stand and Deliver from our visitors:

The latest CSUF graduate Miss Edman enjoyed the energy and enthusiasm
Gary Hill believes that the Champions could be his next BNI home
Bob Rode enjoyed the organization and the energy
Lola enjoyed seeing all of us and enjoyed the warm reception
and Donna Cahoon's sister (you can definitely see and hear the resemblance) really stressed using BNI members for all tasks!

Thanks to our visitors...you make our week!

Dues are dues are dues are due next week!

We will recap YTD stats for the first eight months of the term next week. We will also award three new monthly leaders in 1-2-1s, referrals, and visitors next week.

The keynote this week was all about me...just kidding...but I got a lot of air time. I hope you all benefited from the talk about lease renegotiation and our visitor/sub exercise. My schedule is a little light on one-to-ones this week...anyone interested?

"Hottest" SMM and the International Tabasco Award...and the winner is, Mr. Jim McCracken...a constant contender...but the "halls of Montezuma" theme for the day after Memorial Day really hit the mark! Congrats again, Jim and we look forward to your rule for next week! We had some other contenders today...Jody Houseman, Chris Vasquez, Gary Lorge, Kathy Penton, Greg (the Sheriff) Beck...

Thanks to all the Champions who served our country, Richard Lane, Chris Vasguez, and Lem Bucago! Your service to our country allows us the freedom to attend networking meetings each week!

Bo Lowe delivered the educational moment today with a list of things you can do to strengthen your relationships...Number One, send a TY note...who knew! I bet Bo did, because Bo knows TY notes!

Wow! It is almost summer and the Champions welcomed the first meeting after the first summer holiday with a graduate, five visitors (two double counted that were subs), and a keynote presentation by your faithful President who hasn't changed since this photo was taken last week...:))). Actually, the meeting felt a little like the "Allen show" because of the keynote, the award of the ITA (Donna Cahoon, last week's winner) was in Montana and so the duties fell upon me, and a last minute change in the speaker rotation which the Leadership Team believed necessary...a sub inviting system. Whew! If you have never visited the Champions...today was a rarity. I promise much less of me in the weeks to come.

Woooooooo, CHAMPIONS:

Make it a Champion week everybody!

Your faithful President,

Allen Buchanan

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Webinar for BNI Connect, Dan Fowler, SoCal BNI

Dan Fowler and Lem Bucago do a brilliant job of explaining the new BNI Connect system and how leadership teams can find reports, operational items, etc. If you missed the live version, no problem! You can simply watch the video below.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

BNI Connect Webinar...You gotta do this

We just wrapped up a VERY informative webinar on BNI Connect for Leadership Team members. Lem Bucago and Dan Fowler did an outstanding job explaining the "wheres" of certain operations, tools, and reports for BNI presidents, vice presidents (and sheriffs), and secretary treasurers.

If you are an ambassador, director, president, vice president, or secretary/treasurer, you gotta do this! Tune in this afternoon for the next session if you missed this morning. If you are a member at large, please tune in at one of the times below:


6/01 @ 9:30 AM
6/01 @ 2:00 PM
6/15 @ 9:30 AM
6/15 @ 2:00 PM

Webinar URL AnyMeeting.com/socalbni1
Conference Call Phone Number: (712) 338-7506
Guest PIN: 5234788
All you need is a computer and phone.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

President's Weekly Letter, Champions SoCal BNI

Wooooooo, CHAMPIONS!

What do Sales Manager Moments, Elevator Speeches, Lem Bucago, Profitable Introductions, Jim Sando, Tabasco, Donna Cahoon, and Educational Moments have in common? Champions...that's what! With a touch of scripting brilliance, a prediction from your faithful President (see weekly letter of last week), and a lot of butterfly herding (Mr. Sando knows what I mean), the Champions were treated to an outstanding Educational Moment by Jim Sando (SMMs), a workshop by Lem Bucago (SMMs and fifteen Champions in attendance after the meeting), the International Tabasco Award (ITA) awarded to our newest member, Donna Cahoon (SMMs). Sales Manger Moments, AKA, SMMs, Profitable Intros, Elevator Speeches, etc., etc. were today's Champion theme and the results should be amazing. Remember, an effective SMM MUST have a catchy opening, an LCD with a story or testimonial, a SPECIFIC ask, and be completed within the allotted time frame...in our case, 30 seconds. A large Champion thanks to Jim Sando for arranging the workshop, signing the participants, monitoring the payments, dealing with the venue, etc. and to our very own Lem Bucago for demonstrating why he is Director of Training (workshops) AND was trainer (before they were called workshops) of the year for 2009 and 2010! So by my count, we should have several more **** Champions after June 21st! (the date of the next workshop). Well done folks! Well done indeed!

Meeting Highlights (as if you need more):

100% attendance today!

Director Lem Bucago and Ambassadress Bernardette Lazzara (who won the Champion Spark Plug award for being a workshop maven) were in attendance as well!

EC Moment...above...film attached! Sorry Robert...not as professional as your film!

Donna Cahoon took the coveted ITA (as predicted) for the "hottest" SMM...hope that you don't need the pepper for your upcoming vacation, Donna as the Tabasco is meant to be worn...not consumed.

Carmina Perez, FIS Merchant Services, keynoted in addition to "ruling" the ITA competition today. Rumor has it that Carmina actually took the ruler to several of her clients last week. Director Lem reviewed for us the highlights of the Chapter Success Forums...Subs, Evening Among the Stars, L/T transition, BNI Connect webinars.

Review of Chapter Biz (Greg Beck, the Sheriff) and monthly leaders...the referral leaders were the stars today!(Aric Gless and Brett Adolph with 11 each and Jim Sando with 10). These three gentlemen accounted for almost 1/3 of the referrals that were given last month. Our one-to-one numbers are through the roof as we have completed 252 in this month alone!

Stand and Deliver...heart felt, compelling and tons of TYFCB! Did I hear that we are "someones" favorite chapter? Hmmm? Sorry, Jim Sando, "someone" is allowed in that context!

The GRC team reported the results with one week remaining in the Champion's contest. It is any one's game as reported by Michael Figueroa, Jody Houseman, Ela Corcoran, and Dr. Real. Fewer than 1000 points separate last from first. Tune in soon for the winner, winner, chicken dinner!

The meeting was adjourned with a quote..."wherever you are, be there!"

Make it a Champion week y'all!

Your faithful President,

Allen Buchanan

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Episode 205: “Business Index Q1 2011”


The BNI Business Index is one of BNI’s marketing tools.

Almost 1,500 business people participated in the survey – people from every populated continent around the world – and the results indicate that, overall, the global economic state is improving. 69.4% of the respondents for the first quarter of 2011 feel that business is growing or growing substantially (compared to this time last year). This number has increased since the prior BNI Business Index Survey which was conducted during the last quarter of 2010 – respondents to this same question at that time weighed in at 67.8%.

You can listen to the entire podcast by clicking on the link below:

Episode 205, Business Index Q1 2011

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

President's Weekly Letter, Champions SoCal BNI

Woooooooo, CHAMPIONS:

What do Florida and Electricity have in common? Well today they had the Champions SoCal BNI in common...more on this later. We called the Champions promptly at 7:45 as is our custom. So here is the Florida part...Chuck Wohlberg from West Coast Water Filtration and the Clearwater, Florida chapter of BNI visited us, today. Well, Florida is gator country...Florida Gator country as in Southeast Conference as in rivalry with the team known for "calling" things...oh well, you get the idea...or maybe not. Chuck thoroughly enjoyed the meeting and even commented during the Stand and Deliver section that he has searched far and wide for a chapter for his local salesman to join and today believes that he has found the spot! As to the Electricity part...Dr. Paul Kwik...quite a bowler, btw...delivered a really interesting keynote on the electrical circuits that run throughout your body and affect your health and wellness. Dr. Paul set up his examining table after the meeting and provided a free electrical mapping for all of the Champions...VERY creative, Dr. Paul!

EC Moment:

Jim Sando was illustrative in his description of the VCP process. The dating ritual was used and explained the points of visibility, credibility, and profitability quite well. Don't forget to attend the workshop after next week's meeting. SMM, Lem style!

And the winner is...

Carmina Perez...our second female winner of the International Tabasco Award! Congrats, Carmina. With this award inure all of the benefits including a tax break, a free college tuition for your first born, etc...not really, but we can dream. Actually, you get to pick the winner in next week's competition. Will Dr. Real become the first four time winner OR will another newbie win. My guess is that Donna Cahoon will win soon as her profitable intro included a very cool prop. Mr. Wohlburg received an honorary ITA to take back to Florida...the ITA is already international but we could use some national aplomb!


In addition to Chuck, Blake Green subbed for Rutger and Joel D. Collins from Interior Specialties Construction visited with Donna Cahoon...a great SMM AND a visitor...great things to come methinks!

Champion Spark Plug:

Mr. Patrick O'Kane of Turnkey Mortgage for his skillful arrangement of the Champions bowling night last week. A GREAT time was had by all and a few Champions...Jim McCracken and Dr. Paul can ACTUALLY bowl! Your faithful President, not so much! Thanks for arranging a fun outing for the Champions and family, Patrick.


Evening Among the Stars part Deaux on October the 7th

SMM training next week at our venue! Let's roll out like Champions.

In the words of Forest Gump, "life is like a box of chocolates...you never know what you are gonna get."

Please make it a safe and Champion week y'all!

Your faithful President,

Allen Buchanan

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

President's Weekly Letter, Champions SoCal BNI

Woooooooooo, CHAMPIONS!

Warning, Will Rogers, today's post format is a little out of the norm. Today's post will focus entirely upon the great contributions by a select few of our members and guests. As you have heard me say, "it takes teamwork to run a successful chapter". Your regularly scheduled posting will appear next week...unless of course the author comes up with another idea...

Kathy Penton:

Kathy was clearly anxious today as she arrived at the meeting. Angelo, the visitor host, had asked that she "man" the visitor table...her maiden voyage as she normally is a "connector". Also, Kathy was a keynote speaker. Way to go Kathy! You "manned" the table expertly and found a way to deliver a VERY good keynote on promotional items and the referrals that you are seeking!

Jim McCracken...aka the El Paso Kid:

Jim brings his smile and encouragement to EVERY meeting. Lately, he has brought Rosanne as well! Jim and Rosanne live close...kind of...but Jim must rise a few minutes early and drive away from the meeting venue to insure that Rosanne is able to be present. Thanks, Jim! You are a valuable and welcome addition to our chapter and we are happy that you chose to fly with us!

Joe Davis:

Thanks for pinch hitting for Rosanne while she was away, Joe! You made the transition seamless.

Michael Figueroa...today's Champion Spark Plug:

You work tirelessly behind the scenes to tally all of the contest stats. You make it look very easy!

Donna Cahoon:

Our newest Champion! Congratulations, Donna and welcome to Champions! We are excited that you are with us and look forward to a successful relationship with you.

Dr. Hercules Real:

The second, three time International Tabasco Winner...the first was Steven Stakley. Dr. Real has embraced (no orthodontic pun intended) the ITA like no other...even coaching other ITA winners. Dr. Real is the real deal and a valued member of the Champions!

Profit Partners Contingent:

Thanks to Clement Muwele for suggesting that the Profit Partners visit the Champions. We were delighted to host you and you all are welcome to visit anytime. Your comments during Stand and Deliver were noted (as I promised that they would be) and highlighted below:

John Strauss enjoyed "seeing the potential"
Ryan Fogerty enjoyed the "variety of the Champion's professions"
Mel Arakelian was "inspired"
Nick Inchausti enjoyed us "hosting the chapter"
Ronald Brandalise liked the "energy"

ALL said that they felt welcome, prepared, valued, connected and comfortable. Give yourselves a pat on the back Champions...you did it!

The Champions:

If you weren't mentioned, this is my shout out to you. For a chapter to continue great success, we ALL must contribute...and you ALL do in your unique ways. I am grateful to be on the same flight each week!


SMM workshop May 24th...just remain after the meeting and the workshop will come to you. Maybe we will share the ITA...whatta ya think?

Bowling this Thursday at Concourse in Anaheim at 6:00 PM...young 'uns weclome!

Make it a Champion week!

Your faithful President,

Allen Buchanan

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Mother's Day Testimonial for Lisa Guentert

Lisa Guentert, our friend from the Surf City BNI chapter surprised Carla with a Mother's Day basket and we surprised her with a testimonial!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

President's Weekly Letter, Champions SoCal BNI

Woooooooo, CHAMPIONS! or should I say, Hola Championes? Either way, Happy Cinco de Mayo was the theme of the day!

Continuing the Champions theme of monthly "SMM meeting stimulants", we embarked today to pay tribute to our neighbors to the south and delivered our profitable intros with a Cinco de Mayo focus...and the results were muy bueno! We had several of our members habla their SMMs, a couple of them sang, props were the order as Dr. Real dented a pinata and Michael Figueroa used several brands of Mexican hot sauces to make his point. In the end, Mr. Figueroa won the pepper as Counselor at Law, Randy Clement awarded as today's ruler.

Awards and Chapter Biz:

Most visitors for April, Steven Stakley
Most one-to-ones for April, Jim McCracken
Most referrals, tie...Brett Adolph and Aric Gless

Champions Spark Plug...Dr. Real...two reasons: upping his game for the SMMs, coaching and encouraging others to up their game AND for becoming one of SoCal BNI's newest ambassadors! The Champions now have two directors, two ambassadors, one ambassador "in training", and one still looking...not bad! I believe that equates to over 10% of our membership!


Donna Cahoon, from Today's Windows and Doors, an applicant, and currently being reviewed by our crack membership committee

Andrea Coulon, President of Premier Professionals...always great to see her!

Mohammed Baghdadi, from the Aliso Viejo chapter

Tom Abel, one of the newest members of Marketeers...our younger brother to the west

Tom Roby, subbing for Chuck Tipton


Robert Perez and Randy Clement keynoted and took us through their sphere, ideal referrals, success stories and such. Robert and Randy have become quite valuable to our chapter...Robert as the videographer of the Champions. Much of the video content that you see in our blog was created by Robert. Robert has become quite popular in SoCal BNI also as he is doing several jobs throughout the region. Randy and his son took the ITA last week and Randy always brings his "A Game" during his SMMs, one-to-ones and with his power partners. Randy and his wife Cathleen have big firm experience and now season their law practice with big firm service at a price slightly above Legal Zoom...the best combo goin' for my bucks!

EC phone home...just kidding...wrong century:

Mr. Sando skillfully reviewed the proper way to record TYFCB. The Champions are familiar with this concept as our YTD TYFCB topped $487,500! Ka Ching!


Evening Among the Stars on Friday, October 7th

Bowling with the Champions...next Thursday the 12th at 6:00 PM at Concourse Lanes in Anaheim...rumor has it that Mr. McCracken is tuning up the long ball!

Group training (sorry Lem...workshop) the 24th of May at Meridian Club...19 Champions signed up thus far! Get that **** by July!

Continued thoughts and prayers for Clay Colwell! Welcome back Rosanne! We missed you!

Buenas Tardes, Championes y que tengan un buen semana!

Your faithful President,

Allen Buchanan