Business network concept thriving
BY JULIA WADE
Members of a group which represents owners and operators of Mangawhai’s diverse and varied business world, are looking for new people to join their ranks and meet other like-minded professionals in the area.
Founded by Nicky Crocker – a woman with an unusual and interesting profession, ‘geomancy’ – B2B Networking Mangawhai has been operating since September last year, providing opportunities for business people in any industry to network and help expand each other’s companies.
Owner of Clear Energy Homes, a business focused on the health benefits of clearing geopathic stress, Crocker has been coming to Mangawhai for holidays since the 80s before making the town her home last year. However, despite being a regular visitor in Mangawhai, she says she was unaware of many businesses in the area ‘besides the obvious like local restaurants and the golf club’.
“I wanted to know who else was in my situation and was overwhelmed with the response. It seems like a network group was needed as I had a huge reaction on the local’s facebook page when I put out the request,” she says. “There are a lot very talented business owners here in Magical Mangawhai.”
Initially meeting in September 2018, B2B currently has 25 regular members.
“The idea is to personally get to know everyone so we can all help contribute to each other’s businesses. We may not necessarily be able to always use that person’s unique talents, however there may be someone we know we can recommend them to.”
Gathering fortnightly, now in a new location at Wood Street Freehouse, members not only discuss all things business-related and progress from referrals, but also provides support for personal challenges. Facing the anxiety of public speaking is part of the groups agenda, with members taking turns to present a topic every fortnight, as well as a one minute ‘elevator speech’.
“Many members struggle with public speaking so it’s a great challenge,” Crocker says. “The reason for the elevator pitch is because most small business owners struggle with that situation. You really only get that 30-60 second opportunity to sell your business, so to give them the floor for 60 seconds each fortnight gives them confidence to speak in public. The transformation has been amazing and they can see what works and what doesn’t.”
B2B’s format only allows one representative from each type of business from the local area, making that individual the ‘go-to person’ for their respective field, and members can invite guests from businesses which are not already represented. The membership list already retains a diverse range of specialities including a surf instructor, lawyer, personal trainer, hairdresser, photographer, masseuse/reflexologist, marriage celebrant, dog sitter, electrician, printer, accountant, homeopath, beautician, water distributor and geomancer, ‘to name a few’.
“We are always looking forward to new members from different industries which is the only requirement,” Crocker says. “I love how we have already got quite a wide range of people already and I’m amazed how many people are in such a wide range of businesses we have here in Mangawhai.”
“The idea is to personally get to know everyone so we can all help contribute to each other’s businesses.”