Networking to give not to gain: Faith + Work = Prosperity

The start of our business was very humbling, I, Brandon was a full-time youth minister and Michelle was a full-time graphic designer.  It all began when we were asked to photograph senior photos for several of the teens in my youth group.  The first two weddings we shot were for a close friend and a family member.  This left us wonder, “how the heck do we book clients?”. Michelle and I prayed that God would send us the clients that he saw fit for us.  We put it into his hands. Over the next year we booked several more weddings.  Our friends and family members began to recommend us to their family and friends.  And so our network began to grow.Over the years we have seen how our network has organically grown and how God has continued to bring us the clients He saw fit for our business.  Often in our networking we have met folks that have asked us to do something that is a little out of the ordinary for us, which was great because this enabled us to give rather than to just look at what was in it for us.
Networking is WORK
Networking is important and it is a lot of work. (Hence the reason it is in the very word netWORK.) I think sometimes we can go into networking with the wrong idea. Often we meet people that just want to “sell” themselves, their ideas or services to us without even finding out if we need them first. We have found it super helpful to find out what you can GIVE rather than GAIN from people in your network. How can we be of assistance to them rather than how can I sell my product or service to them.
One of the first steps in networking to give rather than to gain is to identify where your networks are?
Close to Home Network – Your friends & family
Local Community Network – Your church, social groups, civic groups, industry specific groups, Leads groups
Wide Reaching Network– Online communities, alumni groups, target market advertisement 
When we think about the above networks no matter how big or small we really need to think about others, how can we help them, rather than who wants to buy my product or service. In order for us to help others we need to figure out how we can benefit them. Networking with this mindset requires humility because your not going in looking to sell but rather genuinely help someone else.  Rather we might receive in payment the joy of knowing we helped someone.
What do I have to give?
Being active in any group or community and not just a member is important. These are much like a financial investment, what you put in you will get out AND they take time. This means that you need to go to networking events and be present in the conversations for the online groups.  At the events it is not about walking around and giving your business card to as many people as possible, rather it is about meeting people building relationships, and fostering already formed ones. We are giving of ourself.  
Key Note: Many of us are asked to join soooo many groups, it is vital to be selective when choosing which group to join. Only join groups you know you can be active in. 
Collaboration  Over Competition
In our competitive nature we often view other businesses as competition rather than fellow collaborators.  If I support you and you support me then we will both do well. This means sending referrals to others when your too busy or booked.  This means knowing what others do so we can recommend them to our current clients, friends and family. 

Join us today at 2:30 EST on the FB group Faith + Work = Prosperity for our last FB live for the series.

I know this is the end to the series but not the end of this beautiful journey.We will continue to share post each week in regards to being an entrepreneur for God along with frequent FB lives within the Faith + Work = Prosperity Group. We would love to see this group blossom into a community of support where you feel welcomed to share glory stories, God moments, ask questions and have a shoulder to lean on!

Many Blessings,
Love The Horns

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