Stacking Your Supports

Entrepreneurs are hardy souls by nature. All of us had the courage one day to stand up and proclaim we wanted to create something that would last. We have goals that we work towards no matter how many times we trip along the way- and we do trip. Working for yourself is a lonely, sometimes scary proposition. There’s no one to pass a problem off to if you can’t figure things out. Yet, you don’t have to be alone thanks to the likeminded entrepreneurs at B2B Windsor.

Savvy entrepreneurs take steps early in their careers to address this problem. They build dynamic support systems to provide inspiration and help find answers when there seem to be none. A support system is a group of entrepreneurs, both in your field and outside it, who advise you and who you advise in return for the benefit of both. Remember, your business doesn’t operate in a vacuum. There are many interesting, talented, knowledgeable people around you that can help keep you heading in the right direction – and we’re all right here at home.

Perhaps the easiest way to find like-minded professionals is to join an online forum or social group related to your industry. Don’t worry about being too specific; there are forums for every possible interest. The benefit of an online network is that no one has to travel for meetings. Reserved people will have an easier time asking questions or offering advice. The drawback is that it’s hard to make a solid connection with someone you’ve chatted with a few times. Also, professionals in different companies might not be familiar enough with local laws to be of substantive help.

Spending time together in person is the most lasting way to build a support system. It doesn’t require as much planning as you might expect. Just make a habit of visiting fellow entrepreneurs every so often. Stop by during their least busy period for a few minutes of chat, then go on your way. Be friendly and respectful of their time, and ask intelligent questions about their work.

Both of these methods require that you take the initiative in making an approach. If that isn’t your strong point, why not join an existing group of entrepreneurs? Your industry trade publications should have listings for professional associations. Go to a few meetings, and consider attending open meetings for other associations just to build your network. You can also attend events like B2B’s weekly networking breakfast where members are encouraged to share referrals and tips.

You can try to go it alone in business- but why bother when you have options? Join B2B Windsor today, and flesh out your support system to ensure your business reaps the rewards!

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