Net- Works? Part One

networking

Hello there!

Welcome to November.

We are fast approaching Christmas and for some, it is party season. This of course means more socialising. Mixing with people who you may not know very well won’t  be everyone’s cup of tea, but what if you are a business person? They say never mix business with pleasure, so is networking a pleasure or a pain and can this really be classed as socialising?

I attend the InterAction meetings at the Let’s Go! Business hub at Enterprise Enfield and in the week, Comas Sylvans, a mobile app developer spoke about networking. On his company’s Facebook page he previously wrote:

‘Networking is the best form of socialising while discussing business at the same time. It’s FREE to attend as a visitor.’ See https://www.facebook.com/SylvaoakApps.

So is this a good way of viewing networking? With a quick search of the internet about 558,000,000 results came up. This is obviously a major topic, but what is the definition of networking?

According to Wikipedia:

‘Networking is a socioeconomic business activity by which groups of like-minded businesspeople recognize, create, or act upon business opportunities.’

This activity that Wikipedia refers to can happen on and off -line and there are thousands of networking events and groups up and down the country. These include some of the following:

  • Small business networking
  • Speed networking
  • Breakfast networking
  • Black networking
  • Local business networking

These are all organised groups, yet in the meeting with Cosmas, we all agreed that networking does not only apply to structured organisations, but in many instances to the people that we meet every day.

At a networking event I attended at The British Library, life/business coach and author of Soul Trader – Putting the Heart Back into Your Business, Rasheed Ogunlaru, spoke about the networking circles that we have amongst our friends, family and former work colleagues, to mention a few. This free event was refreshingly different to the usual run of the mill networking events. Rasheed Ogunlaru holds other events/seminars, for which there is a charge. For business related events and to check when the next networking event is, see www.bl.uk/business-and-ip-centre.

There are other networking events which are free, like the one at The British Library and those held at business shows (which I have attended) as well as on- line networks like the Guardian Small Business Network (see, What’s the Hub -abaloo? blog dated 8th August 2015.)

I have not even begun to scratch the service of this huge topic, and neither can this be addressed within both parts of blog. However, in Part Two, I will mention a few networks in Enfield, just so that you get a taster of what is available and see whether they do actually work.

Until next time, take care.

Tricia

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