Do you do business with people you know, you like?

Hey Janet! Who did your plumbing for that new addition you built? Brad Wright? Wrights Plumbing? Great! I’ll call him.

Hey James! Who built your website? What was the process like? Did they deliver on time? No? Okay then, I’ll do more research.

When it comes to making buying decisions, whether it’s business to business or business to personal, most of us like to check out who we’re dealing with, especially when it’s a significant purchase. Right? And the basis of all this business has its roots in ‘networking.’

A word that didn’t exist 20 years ago, networking has become THE business builder for people looking to acquire goods and services.

The first week of February is International Networking Week. It’s also the second annual Networking Barrie Event, offered by six Barrie organizations, and designed to raise money. However, the money raised is being donated to five charities…a true win, win, win!

Monday, February 4, the doors at the fabulous Liberty North conference facility will welcome nearly 200 business owners who are coming to enjoy a mix & mingle lunch and hear six speakers with a unique approach to a common theme…networking.

Sinda Simpson brings her humorous brand to open the event with a presentation entitled Business is a Seduction: The Art of Attraction. Sinda, owner of ESS Direct temporary staffing agency, is representing the Small Business Connect organization (

Deborah Foster-Stahle, owner of BNI Ontario Central North (, shares her incredible knowledge about Connecting With Others.

Rebecca Palmer of the Simcoe County Young Professionals Association ( will take the group through Networking Break and Thought Stations, a stimulating exercise guaranteed to increase networking effectiveness.

Sales Simplified: The Story of One Girl, One Professional Fighter & 10 Painted Toes… that’s the topic of Rich Grof, sales professional ( who’ll stimulate business owners to think differently about selling.

Drew Dekker, owner of NetGainSEO and representing the Barrie-Huronia Rotary Club will blend the topics of community service and networking as a business activity.

And Donna Douglas, owner of Grove Vantage program ( closes the day with Can I Do Too Much Networking?

Sixth sponsor of the event is the Barrie Chamber of Commerce. Chamber staff are coordinating registration, booking, and administrative needs during the day.

This is the second annual Networking Barrie conference. Last year’s event was sold out. This year’s event has added 30 more seats to accommodate demand.

But registration closes next Wednesday, January 30. Easy to register…

To spend $55 and benefit yourself, your business and your community is a rare opportunity. A perfect example of win, win, win!

Thanks, Deborah, Sybil, Rich, Rebecca, Sinda, and Drew!