I was introduced to Sharon via a LinkedIn referral about two and a half years ago and was invited along to a meeting of the Business Network (South Herts) group, unknowing what I would find, having been to numerous other networking meetings and events, my expectations weren't high, I thought it would be similar to the other companies events that I had been too that really don't work for my business.
I was pleasantly surprised by the friendliness and diversity of the attendees and the relaxed atmosphere, it was more a gathering of like-minded people than a pressured 'salesy environment'. I have learnt there is one main reason that this works, it's the organisation and the management of the group, the way that it is run at events and behind the scenes. This is all down to Sharon. Most group leaders run their events when they have time between running their business, with Sharon, the Business Network is her business which clearly shows in the professional way that she conducts each event to run smoothly.
Some people don't 'get' networking, and turn up once to an event, 'work' the room, decide that this doesn't work and move on. Business Network (South Herts) is not for them, which is great because this is a networking group set up for the long-term success of its members without the pressurised referral expectations or designated 10-minute meetings, without someone trying to sell you something, or a membership every five minutes.
The added benefit, before each lunch event, there is a well-presented seminar by one of the members of the group, these are always useful and very well received, it also gives you more time to network before and afterwards.
Does it work? Definitely. I have renewed my membership again this year, having had more business and referrals from this networking group than I thought possible, certainly more than any other organisation I have visited. I would highly recommend Sharon and the Business Network (South Herts) to any serious business person that wants to develop a long-term network of contacts.
Kaleidoscope Property Consulting