Starting your own business is certainly not for the faint of heart, it requires strong ideas, strong conviction, patience, and persistence, but equally important it requires valuable resources and support, which is why no entrepreneur can start a business on their own. You need access to guidance, advice, tools, knowledge, and insight from people who have been in your shoes.
Thankfully, many organizations for entrepreneurs offer just that: an arsenal of assistance for anyone thinking of starting their own business.
According to Dave Kerpen, founder, and CEO of Apprentice, it is essential not only to be involved in organizations and entrepreneurial networks but also in the right organizations.
Finding a supportive, informative, and empowering organization can help you network and build relationships that build a brand as much as your confidence. As a result of being involved in Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO), “I am a better CEO, leader, father, husband, and person,” he told Inc.com. “I urge you to consider – for your business’s health and for your own personal well-being – joining a supportive group for fellow entrepreneurs.”
So, where do you even begin if you’re thinking of starting your own business and know you need a forum to help propel your venture forward? Start with these five organizations that entrepreneurs swear by.
This organization has been around for about 35 years and offers members a forum to share and discuss business and personal challenges experienced by entrepreneurs. You’ll be connected with a mentor and access large-scale networking events, healthcare options, and other valuable resources to help you build your brand.
This is an excellent fit for a solo entrepreneur or any new company owner who wants to network and learn how to grow their business through referrals. The mission of BNI is to help members “increase their business through a structured, positive and professional referral marketing program that enables them to develop long-term, meaningful relationships with quality business professionals.”
This organization is for the “younger” founders (whatever that means, age is just a number), under 45 years of age. It is invitation only, meaning you need to qualify to join, but should you be a good fit, this organization is an incredibly valuable community of fellow entrepreneurs. It is a think tank for sharing goals, experiences, and business solutions – all of which are essential, especially in the early days of starting and running a business.
Vistage is all about building connections and helping entrepreneurs and business leaders collaborate to help guide the leadership journey. Starting a business can feel very isolating and terrifying. This organization, the world’s largest executive coaching organization, offers members monthly forum meetings and a one-on-one business coaching session with a professional moderator or coach to help propel their business to a new level.
This organization seeks out entrepreneurs with the greatest growth potential and then works to support members and help them pay it forward by empowering future leaders. It’s a global community of, by, and for “High-Impact Entrepreneurs” — those who dream bigger, scale faster, and pay it forward. Endeavor is on a mission to build thriving entrepreneurial ecosystems in emerging and underserved markets worldwide. Endeavor has local boards and communities with mentors and resources around the globe.