Becoming a member of a general or specialist network can really help you to develop a successful business. This fact sheet has been designed to help you choose the one that’s right for you and your business.
There are many general and specialist membership organisations operating across the Yorkshire and Humberside region. Below are just a few of the benefits and opportunities they offer to members:
- Sharing or gaining new ideas.
- Networking with peers and other like-minded people.
- Developing relationships with potential business customers or suppliers.
- Discounts on commercial services.
- Exploring the competition.
- Gaining access to expert help.
- Keeping up to date with industry developments, new policy and new regulation.
- Obtaining up to date, specific industry information.
- Representing members’ interests on a range of local and regional issues to bodies made up of local councils, strategic partnerships and MPs.
This fact sheet contains some examples of the membership organisations operating in this region. It contains some contact information and highlights where to go to find out more.
Where to start?
With so many membership organisations to choose from how do you go about finding the right one, or possibly more, to join?
There are many networks offering different benefits and opportunities. There is usually a cost so when contacting a membership organisation it is important to ask certain questions to ensure that you choose the right one for you and your business.
The questions to ask include:
- The size of the membership and the types of business involved – e.g. size and sector.
- The cost to join.
- If a membership directory is produced.
- The events programme and average attendance at events.
- Frequency of meetings.
- The discounted commercial services offered.
Where can I find information on networks in the Yorkshire and Humber region?
Contact information is provided below for some examples of membership organisations in this region. Details of professional bodies such as the Law Society or the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) have not been included and this is not intended to be a comprehensive list. Further information on organisations not listed can be found by browsing the internet or visiting the relevant organisation’s website.
Networking Share UK – LinkedIn Group. This group has been set up by Social Progress Ltd for people to share and find networking opportunities in the UK but tends to feature networking events mainly West Yorkshire & surrounding areas.
Some of the more popular networks available?
There are numerous networks in the region – local, regional, national and some international ranging from the general to the specific.
Here’s a few to choose from but there are many more…..
Mid Yorkshire Network – Monthly meetings in Huddersfield & Wakefield
Huddersfield – Venue: Cafe Ollo at the Media Centre – Time: 9-11:00am
Wakefield – Venue: The Priory Bar, Wakefield – Time: 12:30-1:30pm
BNI is an international networking organisation and in the UK it has over 640 chapters (networking groups). Usually only one person is allowed to join a chapter from each trade or profession. Breakfast meetings are about networking, learning marketing skills and developing strong personal relationships that lead to trust and consequently generation of business for each other.
For further information visit: www.bni-europe.com/uk
BNI Terriers – This local chapter meets at 315 Bar & Restaurant, Huddersfield.
BNI Bridge – This is a newly formed group meeting at Bridge House, Honley.
If you’re interested in coming along then just let me know. I’d be happy to check if your trade conflicts with anyone in the room & if not you’d be welcome to come along – there is a £10 fee for breakfast & refreshments.
For further details and to find other local groups – BNI Online
Ladies 4 Networking – www.ladies4networking.com Monthly Lunchtime meetings (£10). Various places across West & South Yorkshire and Lancashire. See LinkedIn Groups for more details. Groups can be found on Facebook & LinkedIn.
Social Sharing Networking – every other month at Soul Kitchen, Holmfirth. Managed by Janet Bebb, Social Progress – www.socialprogress.co.uk Focus on learning & networking. Groups can be found on Facebook & LinkedIn.
Retro Friday – again every other month (and alternates with Social Sharing Networking). FREE to attend, meetings are held on the first or second Friday of a month. For details of the meetings check the What’s On page on the Social Progress website
Coffee & Cake –3rd Thurs on the month, Café Society, Huddersfield 4:30-6pm. Cost approx. £6 per meeting attended. Run by Michelle Hodgson, www.key-words.co.uk See LinkedIn Group for more details.
Forward Ladies is a women’s networking and business support group. Membership benefits include networking events, free or discounted training courses, a mentoring service and discounted products or services.
For further information visit: www.forwardladies.com
WiRE – For women in rural business support is offered through Women in Rural Enterprise (WiRE). This is a national organization with local networks.
For further information visit: www.wireuk.org
4N – www.4networking.biz Membership fee and then £12 per meeting. Members can visit any meeting nationally. Visitors can attend 3 meetings in a 6 month period.
Brighouse Link – Meet quarterly. See LinkedIn Group for more details.
First Friday Club – organized by Revell Ward www.revellward.co.uk Venue’s change monthly.
Last Friday Club – Organised by Ramsdens Solicitors www.ramsdens.co.uk
Venue: BarEleven in Halifax; Time: 12:30-1:30pm
Meetups are free, come along and network in a relaxed environment and the first drink is on Ramsdens.
The Business Network – www.the-business-network.co.uk Membership plus lunch costs.
Meetings in Leeds, York or Wakefield.
The Bizniz – www.thebizniz.com –online and meetings. Free to subscribe and then either membership or pay to attend meetings. Been more East Yorkshire but now actively moving into Yorkshire.
Make It Happen Monday – one Monday morning a month. Event is held at The Lighthouse Group, Hope Park, Bradford BD5 8HB 9am – 12 noon. £20 cash on the door and there is plenty of free parking. Anyone can come along so please feel free to forward this to a friend if you think they would like to come. www.makeithappenmonday.biz or Rachel Gough at InspiredMarketing@vhpl.co.uk
Women With Vision – www.womenwithvision.co.uk/Networking.php held once a month on alternate Mondays and Wednesdays – £15 per meeting and a £50 yearly lock out fee. Very friendly group ideal for new businesses.
Bradford Women’s Business Group – www.bwbg.org.uk – £10 per event usually, range from lunchtime to evening once a month with varied subjects for all tastes.
Holmfirth Networking – Go to the Facebook Page for dates, times & venues.
North Halifax Network – launching on the 1st May 2013. Monthly meetings at at Five Vintage Bistro, Holmfield, Halifax. For further details please contact Sharon Mackle at Aspire Business Development
The EEF represents businesses in the manufacturing, engineering and technology sectors. Benefits of membership include HR, health and safety, legal services, training and development, policy and representation.
For further information visit: www.eef.org.uk
Medilink (Yorkshire and Humber) Ltd is a membership based professional association which provides specialist consultancy services within the healthcare technologies sector. For further information visit: www.medilink.co.uk
For further information on the trade association representing the UK metals industry visit:
The Institute of Directors (IoD) is an international professional network with membership spanning the spectrum of international business leadership, from the largest public companies to the smallest private firms. Membership of the IoD is individual, each member joins in his or her capacity as a director. Membership benefits include advice, information, publications, conferences and training.
For further information visit: www.iod.com or call 020 7766 8888.
The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) is a national organisation that promotes the business interests of the self employed and small businesses. It offers legal, financial and business services in addition to networking opportunities.
For further information visit: www.fsb.org.uk or call 0808 20 20 888.
Chambers of Commerce
Chambers of Commerce cover all types of businesses and membership services include business networking, events, training, commercial services, representation and lobbying.
Contact information for those in this region is provided below:
Barnsley and Rotherham – www.brchamber.co.uk
Tel: 01709 386200
Doncaster – www.doncaster-chamber.co.uk
Tel: 01302 34100
Hull and The Humber – www.hull-humber-chamber.co.uk
Tel: 01482 324976
Leeds – www.leedschamber.co.uk
Tel: 0113 247 0000
Mid Yorkshire Chambers – www.mycci.co.uk
Tel: 0844 980 0045
North East Chamber of Commerce – www.necc.co.ik
Tel: 0300 303 6322
Sheffield – www.scci.org.uk
Tel: 0114 201 8888
York and North Yorkshire – www.ynycc.com
Tel: 01904 567838
Chambers of Trade and Local Business Associations
These local networks primarily cover retail and distribution trades and offer financial benefits, events and representation. There are many Chambers of Trade in this region, including Bradford, Tadcaster, Filey, Otley and District, Whitby, Ripon and Harrogate.
Further information can be found by browsing the internet or visiting the relevant organisation’s website.
A directory of trade associations can be found at www.taforum.org
The Yorkshire Tourist Board (YTB) is the region’s official tourism agency and is responsible for representing and helping to generate sustainable tourism for the region’s tourism economy. Membership gives access to a team of tourism professionals offering:
- Marketing and research assistance.
- A range of discounted commercial services.
- Special offer promotions.
- Discounted banner advertising.
An enhanced entry on www.yorkshire.com with priority search, including an email address and a link to the member’s website.
For further information visit: www.ytb.org.uk/Join-Now.aspx
or call 01904 707961.
Science City York is a membership organisation for bio-science, technology and creative businesses in York and North Yorkshire.
For further information visit: www.sciencecityyork.org.uk
The National Farmers Union (NFU) represents farmers and growers of England and Wales. Membership offers businesses connected to the farming and growing industries, or individuals who are interested in the countryside representation, discounts on commercial services such as a telecoms package, or energy, legal, financial and business services.
For further information visit: www.nfuonline.com or call 0870 845 8458.
This information in this factsheet is intended for guidance only. Social Progress Ltd cannot be held responsible for any actions taken as a result of the content of this fact sheet.
The information in this flyer has been collated from the following people & sources: Business Link Yorkshire; Janet Bebb at Social Progress www.socialprogress.co.uk & Helen Tones at The Implementer www.theimplementer.co.uk