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Q: Are the same professionals allowed in a BNI chapter?

A: Only one person per each professional classification is permitted to join a BNI chapter. For example, if you are a residential real estate professional and we already have one, we can refer you to another chapter, or you could start another chapter. If you are a commercial real estate person, you would be eligible to join our chapter.

Q: How do you know new members are reputable?

A: The application and interview process is quite extensive. We have a membership committee that checks references as well as conducts the indepth interview. Since BNI is word of mouth, a potential member has either spoken to someone or been invited by someone in the group.

Q: What if a member gets a referral and does poor work or fails to follow up?

A: BNI has a Networking Code of Ethics. Upon acceptance to BNI, you agree to abide by the Code of Ethics. (I will provide the quality of services at the prices I have quoted. I will take responsibility for following up on the referrals I receive...)

Q: Are there any other events besides the weekly chapter meetings?

A: Yes. Member Success Programs, monthly advanced training, and from time-to-time there are regional workshops and other educational events.

Q: How do I join BNI?

A: Attend a chapter in your area as a visitor. You are allowed to attend a maximum of two meetings, after which time you will be asked to make a decision regarding membership. If your professional classification is open in the chapter, you must obtain a sponsor in that chapter. You will receive an application to complete. Return the completed application along with your check for dues and registration fees to the Vice President of the chapter. The Membership Committee will evaluate your application, verify your references and interview you and your sponsor. You will be contacted prior to the next meeting.

Q: Are members supposed to bring visitors?

A: Yes!! You bring one of three things to a BNI meeting-- a guest, a qualified referral,or a testimonial.

Q: How do I go about starting a new BNI chapter?

A: First visit a BNI chapter! Next contact the local Director or Ambassador to let them know you want to start a chapter. Finally, you will need to find 12 or more people--a core group--of different professions willing to start the chapter with you. Your Director will then take you through the education process of forming your new powerful word-of-mouth team!

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 business. It is BNI’s intent to ensure that this is permitted.

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Last year, members of BNI passed over two million referrals . . .

....which generated over a billion dollars' (U.S.) worth of business for the members! BNI is a business and professional networking organization that allows only one person per professional classification or specialty to join a chapter.


Q: Can anyone join a chapter?

A: We only take one person per professional specialty. So, for example, 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: What occupations benefit the most from networking?

A: It is not the occupation, it is the individual. The occupation can be anything. All professions can prosper from BNI given you take the time to learn how to target market and teach your fellow members what you are looking for in referrals.

Q: How many members are in a "typical" BNI chapter?

A: A good mature BNI chapter typically has between 20 and 25 members. Some BNI chapters have as many as 45 members!

Q: Are there any other events besides the weekly chapter meetings?

A: Yes, from time-to-time there are regional workshops and other educational events. Some regions have golf outings and awards banquets as well. Contact the local director for more information or check out the regional calendar in this site.

Q: Are members supposed to bring visitors?

A: You're encouraged to bring visitors for those occupations that are open. After the visitor has been prescreened and joins, their profession is then closed. BNI is primarily an invitation only organization and members only look to invite visitors who are interested in joining BNI.

Q: If all of the current chapters have someone in my profession, what do I do?

A: Contact the local director. You will then be given information on how to start your own chapter.

Q: How do I go about starting a new BNI chapter?

A: First visit a chapter to see if you like BNI. Next you will need to contact your local Director and let them know you want to start your own chapter. Finally, you will need to find 10-12 people in different professions who are willing to start the chapter with you. Your Director will then take you through the education process of forming your new powerful word-of-mouth team!

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: How much does it cost to join BNI?

A: The true investment in considering BNI is not money, but your time. You are expected to attend the meetings, meet and develop relationships with your fellow members outside of the meeting and this all takes a time commitment on your part. BNI is a networking organization and you are responsible to work your new network. The annual monetary investment is less than $1 per day.

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 superceded 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 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.