International Networking Week begins on February 3rd and runs until February 7th.
The topic for International Networking Week 2014 comes from a question asked by Stewart Emery: “Who’s in your room?”
Imagine that you were to spend your life in a single room with only one door, and once you let people in, they could never get out. Would you be more selective about who you let into your room?
The quality of your life is a direct reflection of the people in your room. You need a “doorman” who knows your values and doesn’t let anyone pass who doesn’t match those values. In a BNI group, the membership committee acts as the doorman.
Think about the people you really want in your room in BNI. This is the perfect opportunity to invite them to your meeting.
Watch the 2014 International Networking Week Video
Brought to you by Networking Now.
Complete Transcript of BNI Podcast Episode 341-
Hello everyone and welcome back to The Official BNI Podcast brought to you by NetworkingNow.com, which is the leading site on the net for networking downloadables. I am Priscilla Rice, and I am coming to you from Live Oak Recording Studio, in Berkeley, CA. I am joined on the phone today by the Founder and Chairman of BNI, Dr. Ivan Misner. Hello Ivan. How are you today?
I am doing great, Priscilla, and I am really excited to remind all the listeners that next week is International Networking Week. It begins on February and runs until February 7, all week. We have been doing International Networking Week now for a number of years. It is an initiative of BNI’s. BNI created and has introduced International Networking Week globally. Next week is the week. I am going to have a link here in this podcast that leads to the video that accompanies this year’s International Networking Week.
I’d like to take a couple of minutes to talk about the topic that I address on the video. It’s an interesting topic. It comes, actually from a good friend of mine, Stewart Emery. Stewart wrote a number of really good books, Success Built to Last and Do You Really Matter? I heard Stewart ask a question a question that I thought was absolutely brilliant, and it made for a fantastic networking topic. It is the topic for International Networking Week 2014. His question was pretty simple. His question was, “Who’s in your room?”
Who is in your room? What he meant by that was who are the people that you are surrounding yourself with? Who are the people that are close to you, particularly in a networking environment? Here is the metaphor that he established. He said to imagine that you lived your entire life in one room. One room. That’s it. There is only one door to that room. It is an enter only door. Once you enter you cannot exit.
Let me ask you, Priscilla, if that were true, one room, enter only room, no exit and you let somebody into your room and they can never, ever get out- once you let them in, they cannot leave your room. If that were true, Priscilla, would you be more selective about the people you let in your room?
Absolutely. I am thinking for myself about my clients and who do I want to be associated with? Who do I want to work with? That’s what I am thinking.
Right. Every single person that I have ever asked this question to, every single person has said absolutely, or right, or yes. Every single person would be much more selective about who they let in their room.
When I heard him describe this, I thought wow, this is a perfect example not only of networking but of BNI in particular. Who do we let in our room. Who do we let in our group, in our chapter? Stewart went on to describe that your room where you live could be an angry room, a loud room, a chaotic room. It could be a busy room, a boring room. It could have too many people in it. It could be a room of full of drama. I hate those rooms. A room full of drama.
Or it could be a safe room, a happy room, a room with people who have your goals. It can be an exciting room, a successful room. The quality of your life is a direct reflection of who is in your room.
He says, so how do you manage who is in your room? First of all, Mom got it right. You become the people you hang out the most with. So if you are looking for a room to help you grow, you need to know that accumulated mastery involves people who are in your room to teach you faster. So how do you choose who is in your room? This is the part that I really love of Stewart’s concept.
He said you need a doorman. You need someone who is trained on your values and your passions. You need somebody who really focuses on your values. I am not telling everybody to go out and rent a doorman. I am talking about the inner part of your mind that can take a look at what are your values, what do they look like? As a matter of fact, I would recommend that you write them down.
What are the values that you don’t appreciate and you don’t want to surround yourself with? Hear your inner conscience that is looking at the people that you are connecting with and deciding if this is the kind of person that you want to be working with or not.
Now, in BNI, this is what I love: we can truly design our room. We can truly design our BNI chapter. We do that through our membership committee. The membership committee is our doorman. They can screen for a quality business professional. They can screen for attitude. They can screen for people who are positive and supportive.
This whioom. Stewart is writing a book called, Who Is in Your Room? And he asked me to coauthor a book with him called Who Is in Your Room for networking? So sometime this year, you are going to see a book come out. BNI members, it will be called Who Is in Your Room BNI and it will be about this whole concept.
I thought it would make a great topic for International Networking Week. Here is the last thing, and then, Priscilla, if you want to chat about it, I am happy to do that. The last thing that I want you to remember if you are listening to this podcast: think about the people that you really want in your room at BNI. You really want them in BNI but you haven’t brought them in for whatever reason.
This is your perfect opportunity this week to invite people next week to your BNI meeting, people who you really want to build a deeper referral relationship with, or people that maybe you had a good referral relationship with but it has softened over time- you have kind of lost touch with them a little bit and you want to enhance that relationship again. This is the perfect opportunity to bring people back into your room.
So, Priscilla, what do you think of this concept of who is in your room?
Well, I really like the concept of who is in your room. I think it’s great to consider who you are surrounding yourself with, who you get involved with emotionally, who you marry, you know.
That is kind of important.
All of those kinds of considerations. They even talk about people who are in better shape or healthier that are around you- that influences how you eat, how you exercise, all that. So your success is really affected by who you interact with.
But I wanted to ask you something else. I have it because with this Get Connected, Stay Connected in the international concept of BNI, when you talk about International Networking Week, what I thought you were going to talk about was how to network internationally. I would love to have you comment on that because it seems like suddenly there is the opportunity to do that and I wonder if there is any way we could reach out to BNI members in another part of the world and interact with them in some way.
Well, that is a great question. I think that would make a topic of an entire podcast. It varies from country to country. There is no one answer for networking internationally. Just as cultures vary, the way you would connect with people would vary as well. That’s a great question. I think we should probably tackle it at a future podcast.
International Networking Week was really designed to be a week globally, worldwide- we get a lot of press, a lot of media on International Networking Week to recognize the power of networking and to put BNI out there as the spearheading organization for this focus, which because it is our initiative, it absolutely puts BNI out in the forefront.
If you haven’t had a chance to take a look at the video, I will make sure a link is here. Also, if you have a chance, go to www.internationalnetworkingweek.com for more information on BNI’s program, International Networking Week. Priscilla, thank you so much.
Okay. Thank you, Dr. Misner. I really appreciate that. I think that is it for this week. I would just like to remind the listeners that this podcast has been brought to you by networkingnow.com, which is the leading site on the net for networking downloadables. Thank you so much for listening. This is Priscilla Rice, and we hope you will join us next week for another exciting episode of The Official BNI Podcast.