Accountants Who Network - The Benefit!

Richard Speight 29.03.2016

Networking events – why do we bother hosting? Are they a waste of time? Why do the people who attend continue to go again and again? These are all questions which I’m sure you, as a client, think at some point.

You get the invite from the agency, it’s on a weekday night and you were looking forward to relaxing in front of the TV in your PJs with maybe a glass of vino. (I’ll admit, that does sound lush!) But why should you go? As an ambitious, successful accountant, why should you put aside your well deserved down time for one evening, or even morning, of networking in the form of an event? I will explain why those who do join us on networking events join us repeatedly, the feedback we get, and the benefit we see. 

Since I joined Morgan McKinley, I have had the benefit of being part of a number of networking events our Bristol office have held. From seminars, to Christmas dinners, I have been involved in the process of organising, inviting guests and subsequently attending the event. Whenever I go on client meetings, I will always ask the question: “would you be interested in being involved in any networking events we look to do?” and I do hear from a number: “it’s not for me” or “it’s not really my sort of thing”. I understand, the thought of going to an event when it’s only the recruitment consultant you know can seem daunting, but it needn’t, and here’s why:

  •   It’s all about ‘who you know’: finance and accounting is a small world,  It’s all about ‘who you know’: finance and accounting is a small world!it’s mad the amount of times I speak with a candidate about a role and they used to work with or know the hiring manager. Attending networks events where other senior professionals go to, gives you the chance to meet people from a range of sectors: C&I and Financial Services. It gives you the edge when in interview to say ‘I met you at the X dinner a couple of years ago’ – it’s a nice icebreaker to use and shows that you take note of the small things.
  • Your next opportunity or candidate could be just round the corner… At the senior level, a lot of roles get filled before vacancy is common knowledge, and with network events it can be a case of being in the right place at the right time. 
  • Increases your personal brand: going back to the small world analogy, news travels fast, and people talk. Putting your name out there, and representing your company does wonders for how you are perceived in the market. 
  • You’re not alone: it’s called a networking event for a reason! Everyone going will mingle, so you needn’t worry of any awkward situations
  • Get to know your consultant better: whilst it’s great to network with other senior finance professionals, these events are a chance to learn more on your consultant, building the relationship so that we can be your ally when you look to recruit. As a consultant, it’s also useful for us too, as with us knowing you better, we will have a good feeling of the sort of personality which will work well with you and your team. 
     

Along with all of the above, they are a great socialising event, and a chance to let your hair down. Your role could be incredibly demanding, and sometimes it’s just nice to do something partly work related and partly not. When we host these events, we aim to make them two things: factual and FUN! It’s for that reason our clients who have previously attended them join us again and again, as they did actually enjoy the event. Events such as a Christmas dinner are our way of saying ‘thank you’ for your support that year, and a chance for us to give you something back – because we want to. So please, when you next receive that networking events invite, think twice before declining, and think of the benefits! We will be running a number of networking events throughout 2016,  so if you’d like more information please get in touch!

Richard Speight's picture
Manager, Accounting & Finance, Bristol
rspeight@morganmckinley.co.uk