“Wer will dass die Welt so bleibt, will nicht dass sie bleibt.” was said by Erich Fried. Translation – If you want the world to remain as it is, then you don’t want the world to remain at all.
The first time I came across this quote was a few years ago on the Berlin Wall. It is from the 1981 book, Lebenschatten, by German poet, Erich Fried. And while the Berlin Wall was still to remain for another eight years after the book was published, almost forty years later, this quote is completely relevant in almost every situation.
The world as it stands today- from climate to equality- is not sustainable in any way. The current people in power are desperately trying to hold on, but even with the threat of COVID, people are not afraid to take to the streets in solidarity and protest for their rights and for the rights of Mother Nature.
And while we wait for governments to finally wake up and take drastic action in order to create a society in which no-one or no thing is suffering, we can (and should) also look to business for solutions.
Entrepreneurs are like superheroes
As entrepreneurs, it is our responsibility to create businesses that have a positive impact on the community and the environment. The current economic system is built upon a profit-first mindset, in which the thirst for more and more money comes at the cost of people’s lives and the health of our entire planet.
But as entrepreneurs, we have the power to change that. And while it may seem like an incredibly daunting task to revolutionise the current economic system, which is also essentially the only economic system we have ever known, it is also very achievable.
And it begins by looking within. Looking within ourselves to determine our values and the legacy we want to leave for the next generations, as well as within our businesses to see where we can do better, and where we are falling short of working in accordance with our own values and what is best for our world.
The tools and strategies to revolutionise our own business models and therefore the entire system are there, it is just a matter of actually identifying what we need to do and going ahead with investing the time and money to do it.
This requires a long term view. Thinking well beyond what our financial projections are for this year and next, but actually thinking deeply about how our companies will look in another decade or two… or more.
What type of world do we envision that our companies will be operating in? How will we have contributed to this world? And what steps can we start taking today that will move us in that direction?
Revolutionising the economy is unprecedented. The same type of person has dominated business and politics since these structures came into existence, with minorities and women being left out pretty much all together. But just because that’s how it’s always been done, it doesn’t make it right.
We can see by what is happening in the world today, that the time has come to change how society functions, as well as the value we place on each other, other beings and our shared home.
Completely changing our economy and the basis for how we do business can be done. It just requires the courage to be different, to voice the need for change and to think beyond what has been done to what is possible and what changes we want to see.
We can revolutionise the business world
That’s why entrepreneurs like us are so suited to this massive task. We are by definition creative, visionary and motivated. We see the world differently. We are courageous enough to put ourselves and our ideas out into the world, which means we can be the ones to commit to using our businesses as a force for good.
With every decision we make in our own businesses, we have the chance to set the precedent for how business should be. We can show the government, society and even other businesses who are stuck in the “business as usual paradigm” exactly how much better off we can all be, if we move away from the profit-at-all-costs model of business.
Identify what you can do today to create a more positive impact for our future. Start small today and build upon it. Don’t get complacent and think that you have “done enough”. There is always more to do and there are always more opportunities to improve your business and how it impacts the world.
Now is the time. We shouldn’t want the world to stay as it is. Or it very likely won’t remain for future generations.
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How You Can Start Networking in Style in 2023
By investing your time and effort in networking, you will gain more business through the relationships you make
Are you completely new to networking?
Then this article is a great place to start. Networking isn’t hard on paper…you go along to online and in-person meetings, make new connections and build relationships, and those relationships lead to more work so you can grow your business! The challenge is that in reality, it isn’t quite so straightforward, as our emotions get involved and make things much tougher.
It’s incredibly common for nerves to creep in and to feel overwhelmed and apprehensive when it comes to networking – even when it isn’t new to you. But how can you become more successful at it, feel less self-conscious, and make networking work for you and your business?
Here’s a few tips to help you embrace every business networking opportunity you get, so you can grow your business and achieve your goals.
Rock up with confidence
If you want to keep those nerves at bay and ooze confidence at networking get-togethers, you’ll need to downplay it rather than seeing it as a big occasion. Try not to put pressure on yourself and see it as a casual meet-up with a bunch of people with similar goals to you. To help you relax in the run-up to the event, be sure to set achievable goals and expectations before you go.
Keep your chin up and your goals in mind – positivity is key. One easy goal for your first networking meeting is very simply to speak to one other person and see where the conversation goes. Introduce yourself and your business, but take the time to listen to their story, too. It’ll only take a few minutes and will be over before you know it, so it’s nothing to fear. You may even enjoy it and want to speak to a few more people, too!
Where to go networking
If you’ve never been networking before, it might not be very easy to find a group – but only because there’s so much choice and you don’t know where to start your search! Groups come in different sizes and styles, so it’s important to find one that suits you and your business. Informal, formal, big, small… the choice is yours.
For your first meeting, start small to ease yourself in – a big group could prove too daunting, and stop you from feeling comfortable enough to get involved. After all, you want to make a strong first impression!
If you’re wondering which group to opt for in the long-term, give a few a go! Get a feel for them, speak to as many people as you can, and see which one suits! You’ll know when a group feels right for you, and you can see where those all-important relationships are most likely to be built. If a group doesn’t feel like the right for you, give a different one a go.
Get more leads and referrals
This will happen for you, as long as you put the effort into building those relationships. If you take the time to get to know people, and then check in with them and support them, they’ll see you as a trustworthy and reliable contact who they can call on. And when they feel that way, those leads and referrals you’re looking for will come a-knocking.
Once you’ve made relationships with people who you trust, and they’ve had a positive experience working with you, you can even ask for referrals! But don’t rush this, as you don’t want to inadvertently push people away or try and force the relationship along too quickly.
When you do get an opportunity to work with someone you’ve met at a networking group, go above and beyond to offer more value than they’re expecting, as then, they’ll be much more likely recommend you and introduce you to more of their contacts!
Grow your business
By investing your time and effort in networking, you will gain more business through the relationships you make, and you will be able to grow your business.
We know that it’s not easy, going networking for the very first time. And that’s why we want to give you all the advice and tools that you need so you can walk in with confidence and make the most of the opportunity.
2023 is just around the corner, and you have the chance to make it the year you make networking work for your business. And the benefits could be incredibly amazing for your business, just like they have been for ours, and many business owners we have worked with over the years.
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