BNI Mid-South serves West Tennessee, North Mississippi and surrounding areas, including but not limited to Bartlett, Cordova, Germantown, Collierville, Arlington, Lakeland, Millington, Southaven, Olive Branch, Tupelo, Hernando, Holly Springs, Oxford, and Jackson.
Started in January 1985 by Dr. Ivan R. Misner, Founder & Chairman of BNI. BNI provides a positive, supportive, and structured environment for men and women to further their business through word-of-mouth marketing. It does so by helping you build personal relationships with dozens of other qualified business professionals.
BNI provides a positive, supportive, and structured environment for the development and exchange of quality business referrals. It does so by helping you build personal relationships with dozens of other qualified business professionals.
In 2016, members of BNI passed 8.8 million referrals that generated 11.17 billion USD in business for each other. Belonging to BNI is like having dozens of salespeople representing your business, and in return, you are representing their businesses. What goes around comes around. If I help you, you'll help me and we will both benefit as a result.
Networking requires commitment. The most successful chapters of BNI are comprised of participants who are sincerely committed to helping one another through networking. They are a team. As a participant in BNI, you are responsible for complying with the policies and guidelines of the organization. A partial list of the policies of BNI is below.
What You Should Know
Weekly meetings last for 90 minutes. Members need to arrive on time and stay for the entire meeting.
Only one person from each professional specialty is accepted into a chapter of BNI.
All participants must represent their primary occupation.
Attendance is critical. If you cannot attend a meeting, you may send a substitute.
There is an initial application fee, annual membership dues, and chapters may have a venue fee. Please see the chapter Secretary/Treasurer for exact information. When you apply to participate in BNI, your application will be reviewed by the chapter’s Membership Committee and you will be notified of the status before the next meeting.
Increased exposure to many other business professionals
Substantially increase business through referrals
Learn to effectively talk about your business
Sharpen your presentation skills
Participation in up to 52 networking meetings per year
New Member Packet: Business card book, name badge holder, orientation CD, BNI pin
SuccessNet newsletters with educational material on networking, public speaking, and business
The first step is to contact us so we may help you find an appropriate chapter to visit so you can see what we are all about.
Only one person from each professional specialty is permitted to join a chapter of BNI.
All participants should represent their primary occupation, not a part-time business.
Attendance is critical. If you cannot attend a meeting, you may send a substitute. This will not count as an absence.
Participation in the chapter by members is a key to the success of a group. Members can participate by bringing bonafide referrals and/or visitors to their BNI chapter.
Most chapters have a nominal meeting fee to cover the room and meal charges. You will have the opportunity to stand and do a commercial for your company (unless your competitor is a member…then you simply “observe”). Bring LOTS of business cards because you will also have a chance to pass them to all of the members.
The benefits of membership are many!
Increased exposure to many other people and businesses.
Building solid business relationships that will last for the rest of your life
Tools to network more effectively, including educational workshops and mentoring
Visibility, Credibility, and Profitability for each of our members
A: We only take one person per professional specialty. So if you are a residential real estate person and we already have one, we can refer you to another chapter, or allow you to open another chapter. Of course, if you are a commercial real estate person, you could be eligible to join this chapter.
Q: How do you know new members are reputable?
A: The application asks for references and we have a membership committee that checks them. It's word of mouth, so before they even come to a meeting they have to have spoken to someone or been invited by someone in the group. Everyone has to have a sponsor, or one is assigned to them, and they interview them.
Q: What if a member gets a referral and does poor work?
A: We have an ethics committee and it is imperative that anyone who gives a lead and finds out it was not satisfactorily handled must report that to the membership committee, who will investigate
Q: What occupations benefit the most from networking?
A: It is not the occupation, it is the individual. The occupation can be anything. If you're focused and you have a dream and you're willing to make a sacrifice, you are the person we want in the group.
Q: Are members supposed to bring visitors?
A: You're encouraged to bring visitors for those occupations that are open. It's pretty much a closed meeting except for potential members.
Q: Do ethical rules for certain professions prohibit participation in BNI?
A: BNI understands the importance of the ethical concerns governing certain professions and acknowledges that rules can differ by location. As such, BNI, therefore, requires its members to uphold the rules of its profession so as not to violate the professional's ethical obligations. In the event that BNI's general rules could potentially violate a professional's ethical code, BNI's rules are superseded by the dictates of the professional's ethics' code. Significantly, a primary objective of BNI is to educate its membership in ways to market and grow their business. It is BNI's intent to ensure that this is permitted.
Q: If I specialize in a field within my profession, am I expected to be an expert in all aspects of my profession?
A: BNI understands that many professions are broad and that people often specialize within their profession. BNI does not expect, nor does it encourage, any professional to participate in an area in which the professional does not have expertise. On the contrary, BNI prohibits professionals from acting outside of the scope of their abilities.
Q: My profession does not let me directly solicit business. Is BNI still right for me?
A: BNI's primary objective is to assist its members in ways to improve their business and to educate them concerning how they can effectively network. Business people get business when their expertise is known and others reach a comfort level with them. BNI provides a forum that allows members to meet other business peers who need to know effective and efficient business people.