Lynn’s BNI Vancouver chapter has pledged to beat its impressive total last year of £1.5 million of invoiced business within the group.
The commitment was underlined by its new leadership team, who took up their positions at the traditional annual April changeover meeting.
The group also wants to encourage local businesses to visit a breakfast meeting to see how so many qualified referrals – and tens of thousands of pounds of business – are confirmed every single week.
The new chapter director is Oliver Tookman, owner of top fashion retail chain Robert Goddard Ltd, aided by Maxine Thorne, of Business Buddy (UK) Ltd – a business and marketing development company – and Steve Welcomme, of Metcalfe Copeman & Pettefar Solicitors.
Mr Tookman has three branches of Robert Goddard in Wisbech, March and Spalding, and is highly experienced in business planning and income generation. He said: “BNI Vancouver has a reputation for being highly business focused and we work on each other’s behalf to actively seek out business opportunities for chapter colleagues.
“These aren’t just leads we look for; these are based on having already established what a contact requires from a trade, a profession or service provider and then linking the two together through a referral.”
Maxine Thorne said: “It’s like having nearly 30 sales people out there, proactively looking for business opportunities for you. The introduction has already been made, so making a referral into real business is quicker, easier and the conversion rate is much higher.”
Steve Welcomme has been in BNI for many years. He commented: “BNI is a weekly ‘sales convention’ with everyone sharing referrals discovered when they go about their daily work. It is very satisfying to be able to help a client who is, say, looking for a decorator, or an architect, or a bespoke fitted furniture designer. You can connect the two with confidence because you already know your chapter colleagues’ businesses inside out as well as knowing that if they are in BNI, they can be trusted to deliver what you say they can.”
Over the coming months BNI Vancouver will be contacting local businesses to offer the opportunity of being a welcome visitor at the Thursday morning meetings at the Kings Lynn Football Club ground – providing the category is still open, of course.
Mr Tookman has a personal invitation for any business owner who wants to see their business opportunities increase and improve. “I know from personal experience that BNI Vancouver can add thousands of pounds to turnover and that members will promote colleagues’ businesses at every opportunity. I am looking forward to seeing our membership expand so that everyone can benefit from our key target this year – breaking our 2013 record of one-and-a-half million pounds-worth of business generated locally.”