Summer business networking at Crackshot in Heathfield

We’re delighted to announce on July 5th we’re back at Crackshot Air rifle range and store in Heathfield, Newton Abbot.
We start at 5pm and you’ll have the opportunity to try your expertise on the Air Rifle range and pistol ranges, we may even have prizes for the best shot or closest. At the same time you’ll be in the running to win prizes, so you may not go home empty handed!
As you would expect of a G12 event we’ll have catering while networking with a selection of sweet treats as well as soft drinks for us to enjoy as we all meet, greet and make new contacts.
So do come and join us book your place on our website here.
Business Tips, Networking

Five suggestions for what you can do when attending your first business networking event

Here are five suggestions for what you can do when attending your first business networking event:

  1. Set Clear Goals: Determine what you hope to achieve from the networking event. It could be making a specific number of meaningful connections, learning about industry trends, or seeking potential collaboration opportunities. Having clear goals will help you stay focused and make the most of your time at the event.
  2. Be Prepared with Business Cards: Carry an ample supply of business cards to exchange with other attendees. Your business card should include essential contact information and a brief description of what you do. Hand out your cards strategically to individuals you have engaging conversations with and want to stay connected with.
  3. Engage in Active Listening: Networking is not just about talking about yourself and your business. Actively listen to others and show genuine interest in their work. Ask open-ended questions to learn more about their experiences and challenges. Listening attentively will help you establish rapport and build meaningful connections.
  4. Introduce Yourself with Confidence: Prepare a concise and compelling introduction about yourself and your business. Clearly communicate your value proposition and what sets you apart. Practice delivering your introduction in a confident and engaging manner to make a positive impression on others.
  5. Follow Up After the Event: Networking doesn’t end when the event concludes. Take the initiative to follow up with the contacts you made within a few days. Send personalized emails or connect on professional networking platforms like LinkedIn. Reference something specific from your conversation to jog their memory and express your interest in staying connected.

Remember, networking is an ongoing process, and your first event is just the beginning. The more you attend and actively engage in networking events, the more comfortable and effective you’ll become at building relationships and expanding your professional network.


What is networking

This a simple question and as always not necessarily a simple answer, so what is networking, and how can it benefit your business?

We know for many people networking is a necessary evil that they have to do for the business they represent, they don’t enjoy it they just participate because they have to.

For me, networking can and does help you meet a new circle of people, can help you be introduced to people you’d never have the opportunity to meet and can help you grow your business contacts thus developing your business.  In a nutshell, networking is the making of connections that can help you and your business, what it is not is the start of a sales process.  Put simply if you’re going to any networking event hoping to walk away with a sale you’ve gone with totally the wrong mindset, networking is not about pitching and I can’t say this strongly enough its about making new connections and keeping in touch with those you already know in a semi formal way.


Business Lunch in Devon

For the first time, we’ve decided to offer a business lunch and we’ve partnered with one of our members South West Business Connections to offer this to all there attendees as well.  The lunch is on the 19th October at the wonderful Cridford Inn in the heart of the Teign Valley on the 19th October and we’ve being served locally sourced two-course menu at this highly rated pub click here for more details and booking.

We welcome all types of businesses to what promised to be a great event for us, good food, a good location, and great business people – look forward to seeing you then.

Business Tips, Networking, News

10 reasons why you should go networking

So business networking, what’s it all about, and why should you go networking and go to any of the numerous well-run business networking events?

Well, I’ve been attending networking events for years and also I’ve run my own business networking events in Devon for many years and these are my top ten reasons why you should get out and go networking.

  1. increase profile
    Who knows about you, what you are, who you represent, and what you stand for? If you regularly attend networking events far more people will get to know more about you, you will by default increase your profile, people will get to know you more and that has to be a good thing doesn’t it?
  2. deepen business connections
    The thing with networking is the more people you meet the more you’ll get to widen and deepen those business connections, instead of being just a business card someone has collected, we’ve all got lots of these haven’t we? If you’re a regular networker you’ll make yourself something more, people will learn more about you and that makes it easier for anyone to refer future opportunities to you.
  1. increase your confidence
    I have spoken to so many nervous networkers who are unsure as to whether they should attend events I run, they contact me for almost a pre-brief as to what happens and what’s expected of them. So what do I do, well I try and reassure them that it’ll be fine and we’ll support them, you have no need to be nervous. The one thing I know is that attending networking helps everyone I’ve met increase their confidence.
  2. develop you as a person
    You never know who you will meet when you’re networking, I personally have met the widest variety of people you can possibly imagine, and therefore similar to point 3 you will improve as a person in more ways than you can imagine, things like your presentation skills, verbal skills, and sales skills will all benefit.
  3. learn more, increase your knowledge
    At lots of networking events, you quite often have a speaker or someone giving some kind of talk about their business or specialty so you’re bound to learn more about them and their business which in turn, of course, helps you learn more.
  4. build your confidence
    If this is your first event you’re bound to be nervous, it’s only natural. Make no doubt after you’ve been to 2 or 3 events you’ll be recognized and welcomed like a long last friend (at least you should be) and that will seriously help build your confidence.
  5. gain mentoring
    People often overlook this, but I think it’s one of the most important. So say you attend a regular monthly event, you’ve got a question in one meeting I guarantee that next month you’ll be asked about the answers you were given, ‘how did that work out for you it’s mentoring where you are supported in the group and by the group. It can even be as straightforward as being asked how your month has been, highs lows, etc, this all rolls into supporting you and your confidence.
  6. get answers and help
    I’ve seen this quite a few times when someone attends a networking event with a question or in need of help, the best way to think about this is it is like crowd sourcing an answer. I know that asking the audience may get a few different answers but you’ll get answers and the same goes for help, if you’ve built your profile and worked to deepen those connections then you’ll also find networking as a great environment to get help.
  7. develop new business relationships
    In a similar way to point 2 where you develop new personal relationships, this is where you develop new business relationships, maybe meeting a new supplier or a business who is in need of what you’re offering or knows someone that needs your help — focus on the business and those relationships will develop.
  8. look at things in a different way
    The great thing about meeting different people who work in and run different businesses is that we all look at things differently and given time you’ll being to see that as well.

Ten reasons why you need to go networking, hopefully, compelling enough for you to make that first attempt if you haven’t already and go networking. If you’re based in or near Devon then do check my business networking group out, you’d be most welcome to attend.


Autumn South Devon Business Networking Event

We always take a break for Summer with no meetings in August, so I’m delighted to confirm that we’re back at Teign Valley Golf Club on Wednesday 21st September.

Our first Autumn South Devon Business Networking event at the fabulous Teign Valley Golf Club and we’ve even made a short video as to why you should come and join us.

To book your space on Eventbrite click here: we look forward to meeting you then.

Business Tips, Networking

Why you need to build your network

It does amaze me that some people just don’t want to talk to others unless it comes with a sale guaranteed, they ask why I spend time every week speaking and meeting new people — the truth for me is that I actively make space and time every week to meet and have conversations with someone new, it’s my fuel, its what drives me on and its what has helped grow and develop the Exeter digital marketing business and the business networking group that I run.

Consequently, during the lockdown, I spoke to the widest variety of people possible, through the networking group I’ve made time to contact every member and I’ve also tried to contact all past attendees where I can, just to touch base with them. These calls have had no agenda, they’ve simply been about making contact and keeping that relationship we had when we could meet face to face alive as well as we can in the unknown Covid times we found ourselves in.

So how do I plan this you may ask? Well, I keep a schedule in an online calendar that blocks out time for me every week — clear time when I can make that effort to call a group of people one after the other. This way I know that I have time in my day blocked out for the task and if I have a list I can work as far through that in the time before I stop and move on to another business task. As for any agenda or plan, for me I try and keep this as simple as possible, really I want to have a conversation with no agenda or plan. I ideally want to learn more about who I’m calling, what’s happening with them, and also if can learn more about what makes them tick, I’m aiming to build a bond. It’s quite simple, I believe that the world runs on relationships — so I take time to build some.

Let me summarise, in easy and simple terms people buy from those they know, like, and trust so I spend some time every week on building that relationship as I know if I do this then the referrals and sales will follow…

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