The 3 Things You MUST DO At Your Core Group Meeting

1. Create an Impressive and Professional Environment

We are inviting people to a professional business networking group and when they arrive, the environment must be top class.

Firstly, the hotel must provide good signage so that the Visitors are not running all over trying to locate the venue.

The sign in table must be well set up, ideally with some flowers (hotel can provide).

And very importantly, the Door Person must be alert (not half asleep), cheerful and warm. The signing in process must be a pleasant experience, with 2 name cards requested for, and a name tag given to the Visitor.

There must be proper sign in sheets, not scraps of paper with hastily written heading. The signage for “Please pay … and Give 2 Cards” must be up to clear confusion, and the list of professions required must be clearly displayed.

Once they move into the room, all the seatings have been arranged neatly and properly, with referral slips and articles on BNI on every place. The number of seats must be correct to the crowd expected, to give a “full room” feeling. Know where the spare chairs are kept.

Breakfast should be ready in a corner, and the coffee (or tea) must be hot!

The display table at the front of the room should have the full collection of Ivan Misner’s books, and the range of CDs and tapes available, and one set of the new members’ kit.

If you have any BNI banners or posters, put them up to create atmosphere.

On the white board, have the words “Welcome to BNI “_________“ Chapter.

Get those friends of yours that have committed to be the “Visitor Hosts” to welcome the other guest and overall create a warm, friendly and inviting atmosphere.

Note: Visitors make up their minds in the first 5 minutes whether they want to be part of the Chapter or not, and spend the rest of the time at the meeting confirming their decision. So this initial first impression is very very very important!

2. Give an Energetic, Dynamic and Irresistible Presentation

As shared in the previous part, you will have to be very familiar with the Core Group Script. You musn't be just reading the script, you have to make it come to life.

People are here to be excited by you, and it is your sheer enthusiasm that is going to win them over.

Make the session very interactive, get feedback from the audience and draw out their experiences and show how BNI can help them.

e.g. Ask "how many of you have experienced getting referrals from satisfied customers? How often to you get them?"

And most would find that the closing rate from referrals is much higher than for cold calls. Ask them whether this is a fact.

Then ask them “Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have all your customers give you referrals every week?” I am sure that everyone will say “Yes”.

Would they want to be part of a group that can give them referrals week after week?

Guess what? BNI is the group.

Bottom line is that your presentation must be all about Benefits – not the features i.e. how BNI can help them increase their business and not about BNI history, facts and figures.

Everyone is tuned to the same station WIIFM – What’s In It For Me

3. Ask for the Commitment – Sign Up and Pay Up!

We are having the core group meetings for one purpose only – to have 18 to 20 core group members to launch the Chapter. That must be foremost on your mind!

During the presentation, you have already told them that:
* You role is to get 18 -20 members to launch a chapter
* You are only going to allow one member per classification
* You are on a tight time frame and have only 4 weeks to get the numbers
* You mean business!

They expect you to take charge and ask them whether they are in or not, and if they are in, they are expecting to pay up immediately to lock in their position. If they are going to pay by cheque, then get them to fill the form and pass you the cheque within the next 24 hours. (They chase you, not you chase them!)

You got to show them the urgency, and that you mean business.

Don’t waste your time if they have got to think about it, which means next week. Tell them that you will be inviting the same profession again and you would not pick the first person who pays up, but the most qualified candidate. So it might not be them! (Use the fear of loss strategy!)

Now the only way a Director can have the confidence to say that, and have those present believe you is that you must show that you are able to bring people to the meeting. If you are weak, then they know that you need them and not the other way around.

So at the end of the meeting, do not be hesitant or be afraid. Just do it!

Tell them to fill up the application form so that we can have more information about them. Everyone must fill one.

And those that want to lock out the competitors to put down their credit card number.

(That is why it is important to have your friends committed to you before the first core group meeting - when the rest see your friends joining, they will also want to join.)

We recently had an AD who got his core group formed in just 2 weeks and went straight into training – he simply followed the steps outlined in this Guide!

If they want to pay by cheque, tell them to pass you the check by today, latest tomorrow and give them instructions on how to pass the cheque to you.

It is that simple!

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