Grasp the Hidden Power in Your Networking Group

Diverse perspectives of members yield strategies.

Networking. What could be new?

Your networking group is a source of direct referrals, of course, and some of its members may even become clients.

Through these contacts, you might land an introduction to a person connected to a company in your sights, following the maxim Everyone knows someone worth knowing (see Networking Towards the King)

Or you may do a good deed by connecting two contacts who might be helpful to each other as resources or referral sources. (see Turn Your Networking Inside Out)

Now, here’s the hidden power of organic or private networks often overlooked: that of the informal business coach.

Your network colleagues have heard your success stories over recent months or years. They see your dedication to your clients.

When you are stymied by a What should I do next scenario, consult the folks in your networking circle.

A dozen consultants of the Nonprofit Flight Plan, who advise nonprofit organizations on operational, marketing and financial issues, have, over the years, shared with me their insights and also suggested strategies.

Recently, a conversation touched on pricing for services. How does a consultant delicately — and forcefully — convey the value that is built into every interaction?

We focused on the understanding of a situation, the wisdom to make the appropriate recommendation and the capacity to follow through on the implementation. All these steps demonstrate the value of the consultant’s experience and the client relationship. This price tag cannot be calculated by the one-time fee for service or retainer.

This is an example of what makes the wisdom of a networking group priceless.

This Month’s Tip

Tap into your network for advice and your own brain-stretching. Networking meetings are not only about individuals and their presentations. It’s the collection of multi-disciplinary perspective each one brings to the table. Informally advising your colleague will help you exercise your brainstorming muscles, build trust among contacts and garner ideas to develop your own business.


Are you looking for invaluable advice? You may find it among your networking contacts. Let’s brainstorm who the best partners for you might be. You can reach me at 212.677.5770, set an appointment here or email me at

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See also: Everyone Knows Someone Worth Knowing