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Professional Meetup Groups, Workshops, Events, Professional Training, and your Professional Networks are all ideal for, sharing ideas and connecting with 3rd party partners.

What Is A Meetup Group?

A Meetup group is a local community of people. Meetup groups are free and they are sustained through Meetup events, which are face-to-face gatherings that happen in real life between members and organizers.

You may be able to find similar businesses in your local community that you can network or share ideas with. You can find a Meetup group in your neighborhood on the Find page.

On this page, you’ll also be able to see the location, description, and topics of nearby Meetup groups. You can also browse upcoming Meetup events within all the groups in your area or you can create your own Meetup group.

Today’s Workshop & Professional Training

In today’s environment, a workshop can be a training class, seminar, webinar, or an event in which the participants work individually and or in groups to solve actual work related tasks and gain hands-on experience that enhances their professional know-how.

In my experience, these workshops are usually pay-to-play environments that allow for optimum engagement. In other words, smart participation that ads value to the session will also bring clever visibility to you and your business.

Professional Networks

Having a strong personal brand requires being connected to a network of resources for mutual development and growth. We achieve our greatest success through our relationships with others.

That’s why it is critical to build and maintain your network. But approach is everything. If you build your network with the goal of supporting others, you will be far more successful than if your objectives are solely to satisfy your own objectives. Your network is a valuable component of your personal brand; here are five ways to build and a strong network.

  1. Speak.
    Take every opportunity to speak about your business – your passion. This means everything from talking about what you do with the local shopkeeper to making presentations to large groups. People with whom your message resonates will connect with you and quickly become a part of your network.
  2. Participate.
    Join professional organizations. It is better to belong to fewer organizations and take an active role in them then to belong to many with organizations with superficial connections to the membership. Truly participating allows you to really get to know people and thereby supports your desire to build professional relationships with them.
  3. Publish.
    Writing articles and e-articles is a great way to communicate your passion. Take some time to write a few articles related to your goals/interests that will provide value to the readers. Identify your ideal publications and take a look at all the blog sites that accept article submissions. Readers of your articles will seek you out and become part of your network.
  4. Create.
    If there isn’t an organization that fits with your objectives, create one. It can be a physical organization or a virtual one. Being the founder of the organization gives you instant credibility with your entire membership and gives you opportunity to define and mold it.
  5. Volunteer.
    Volunteering is a great way to build professional relationships while giving back to the community. Take a volunteer position that allows you to use your skills and express your passion. Your network will grow along with your sense of accomplishment.

Make New Connections

To be truly successful at networking, you need to be continuously making new connections while at the same time nurturing the relationships you have. Remember, if you take the attitude that it is about you, you will be less successful in retaining your network.

But if you treat your network as a group of people you serve and support, your experience will be much more positive and you will attract what you need to be successful. Here are five ways to keep your network going.

  1. Write.
    Create a newsletter or ezine as a source of regular communication with your network. Include articles that are an easy read and provide value to the readership. Keep an updated mailing list to ensure that your newsletter reaches your entire audience.
  2. Express.
    Express thanks, congratulations and fond wishes. Remember to send birthday cards, holiday cards, thank you cards, etc. This is a great way to show the members of your network you care while keeping a regular dialog with them.
  3. Update.
    Every time there is a change to your organization, your work status or your contact details, broadcast it. Use these life changes as opportunities to remind your network that you are there.
  4. Telephone.
    Mass media like e-mail and newsletters are great for consistent communication. But enduring business relationships require much more. One way to stay in touch and build stronger bonds with your network is to commit to at least one call a week. These calls are to special people that you select therefore, you should enjoy them. So take the 15 minutes to half an hour it takes each week to keep the network alive.
  5. Socialize.
    A great way to build and nurture your network and help people build theirs is to host an event. This can be a random event at your house or a recurring event at a chosen meeting place. This will provide an informal way to get together and connect the members of your network and with each other. If each member brings a member of his or her network, it will also help to significantly expand yours.
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