07 Dec 2022
Well-developed networks provide entrepreneurs with partners, vital peer support, and security for rainy days.
Are you looking to grow or boost your business? Small-scale entrepreneurs can often find help through networks.
The wider and more versatile the network around your business, the smaller the risks related to expansion. A good network can make expanding your business more efficient and also increase your credibility. In the best-case scenario, combining forces with the right partners will allow you to reach an entirely new customer group.
In an ideal situation, cooperation within a network benefits everyone involved; as each participant offers their competence to others, they all benefit from the reciprocal arrangement. When work is distributed such that everyone is able to utilize their own advantages, the network is in a good position to succeed.
Networking can often be vital to small and new businesses in particular, but larger companies can also enjoy the benefits. Smaller businesses are often able to offer larger companies new innovations and approaches, whereas larger companies can bring important contacts, distribution channels, and more cost-effective methods to the table. A small business may find it hard to gain visibility without networking with larger companies.
Cooperating successfully within a network requires that the entrepreneur has a clear understanding of the situation and activities of their business as well as their own competence. Entrepreneurs should also look into the background of potential partners and their motives for the cooperation to avoid misunderstandings and disappointments. Trust between the companies and a shared set of rules are essential to a well-functioning network.
Networking can also allow entrepreneurs to refrain from hiring an employee, as they can instead utilize skilled professionals within their networks. This is often more cost-effective and less risky than hiring a new employee. At the same time, networks also offer entrepreneurs social security of sorts; if something unexpected happens, help is probably readily available within a network of skilled professionals.
In addition to purely commercial benefits, networks can, at their best also, offer entrepreneurs important peer support.
The day-to-day routine can often be lonely for small-scale entrepreneurs in particular, as you are not surrounded by a work community to lean on when the times are tough. The peer support provided by other entrepreneurs can become vitally important after failed customer negotiations, for example, but also when things are going well for your business. Experienced entrepreneurs can often provide vital tips on how to raise your operation to the next level. Bouncing ideas with others can be both fun and useful and may bring up things you would not have thought on your own.
You should keep in mind that the usefulness of networking is directly affected by the time and effort you put in. A mere contact request on LinkedIn is unlikely to lead to much and instead you should try to get to know the people on a personal level. You may never meet every member of your network in person but staying in touch online or over the phone can be just as valuable. A well-functioning network requires active communication and offering your own competence and innovative ideas to the other members.
Do not hesitate to contact us and book a free appointment! You can also contact us using the contact form below.
Keski-Uudenmaan Kehittämiskeskus Oy
Business Development Centre Ltd. Helsinki Region North
Puuvalonaukio 2D, 2. krs, 04200 Kerava
050 341 3210