Community impact is now a major stakeholder in the branding terrain and these days, people want to associate themselves with institutions that can make them feel like they are contributing to something bigger than themselves. In a nutshell, the community is key for the growth of a business and an individual. Joining communities are important for professional growth for many reasons such as providing a network. One of such communities is the AGS Tribe.
The AGS Tribe is a community built to connect young entrepreneurs and professionals. It inspires and builds their capacity into strong leaders. This is achieved by providing access to grants, global opportunities, networking events, and access to investors.
One importance of being part of a community is that it gives businesses the power of voice; it has the power of marketing through advocacy by way of word of mouth. A community can serve as a key player in growing a business. Through the influence of its community, it can reach a wider audience and sell products that have undergone refinement, drawn from the community’s feedback.
Many businesses budget millions to circulate surveys to garner feedback and suggestions from its customers. However, with strong support backing, genuine opinions are always forthcoming. This not only helps to improve the quality of products, but also to crystallize the loyalty of the community. Members are happy, satisfied, and feel heard because their judgments are trusted. Just like that, resources are saved because there is an army ready to serve as testers of products and provide recurrent feedback on issues they come across. Furthermore, engaging with fans allows a business to understand its products from different perspectives and to observe how consumers navigate or use differently from how it is intended to be used.
Apart from reporting bugs on existing products, the fan base could help cut out numerous tedious brainstorming sessions by providing ideas for new features that might bolster the usefulness, ease, creativity, and what-have-you, of a product. The power of a community could potentially help businesses expand their product’s life cycles and stay abreast of its competitors through the generation of new ideas, anywhere in the world.
Communities help scaling a business less of a hassle and valuable resources such as money and time would be saved simply by reaching out to the community in the region of interest. Just like that, a business can cut costs on important stepping stones such as market research.
While the community is an important tool to have for businesses, it should also be an integral part of every professional’s work-life if the plan is to scale the corporate ladder. An important part of professional growth and reaching the goal is networking. A good way to go about that is, joining communities. Interacting and reaching out to people could potentially open doors to opportunities that were not realized. According to Payscale, a research company that helps individuals understand their worth in the job market, 85% of all jobs are gotten through employers, friends, and acquaintance; what more, these roles are generally not published. So, it’s important, especially as a job seeker, to expand professional networks than to waste hours surfing the net for roles that they have only about a 15% chance of being gotten.
Find the hotspots of successful people and seek out those whose journey and leadership style could complement your mission. This can be achieved by attending events, searching for groups on social media such as LinkedIn or Facebook and hunting for niched blogs or professional groups in messaging apps such as Telegram. Additionally, the latter options are perfect for introverts as it cuts the small talk and is less emotionally daunting. After finding the best-suited one, the next step is to reach out. Remember, connecting with people is not a one-way street. It is not about pitching ideas and expecting to hit things off right away. Instead, build rapport with idols; treat such relationships like a marriage. Figuratively, “date”, “massage”, or “toast” them first before dropping the bomb.
How can you avoid barking up the wrong tree or eschewing communities with empty promises? Target niched communities. If there is a need to fund a delivery business, for instance, there might not be the need to search for venture capitalists, but to seek out people in the logistics space. If the goal is to start a snail farm, it may better be able to identify major players in the heliciculture sector. Once the right mentor is identified, be the sort of mentee you would want to mentor. Be a go-getter, be flexible, respectful, dedicated, etc. To ensure these qualities are met, be great at what you do. To hold the attention of a mentor, be a wiz at your role. Keep yourself informed always, of your industry, and be strong at the skills necessary for you to scale. Always be ready. You need to be armed with ideas, be creative and ready to contribute in profound ways. If you schedule a meeting with your mentor, show up; participate in all meetings and prepare to advance discussions. Finally, learn to uplift others. In doing so, you will be remembered and by extension improve your chances of success.
So, if you need feedback, advocates, or need to scale your business, the community is key. If you are an individual working in the corporate sector and have a dream role you are targeting, the community is integral. Whatever the case may be, the community helps bring clarity, elicits the high-level support you need, and is the greatest asset for growth.
These are some of the benefits of the AGS Tribe. It creates and fosters networks and opportunities by building the capacity of both entrepreneurs and professionals. It introduces its members to industry experts who share their experiences and who may serve as mentors. It also provides global opportunities for businesses to access grants and to scale.
Ifedayo Durosinmi – Etti is an Author, Entrepreneur and Young Global Leader with over 10 years of management and leadership experience working in the fashion, marketing and manufacturing Industries. She holds a first degree in Biochemistry and an MBA in Global Business. She is the Managing Partner for AGS Tribe, a social enterprise created to democratize opportunities for entrepreneurs and non profits in Africa. It is also a platform that brings female entrepreneurs together to form cross boarder relationships with the aim of transforming Africa. She is very passionate about women and youth contributing to national development and has been able to empower female entrepreneurs through the AGS Enterprise Challenge, a program that empowers female entrepreneurs through funding, mentorship and training amongst other projects. Recently, she launched a $1,000,000 women empowerment fund to fund female businesses in Nigeria.