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Small Business Networking Groups
Open groups – These groups do not have exclusive “seats” and are either free to attend or have very minimal fees for meetings.
The Cary Leads Group has a warm, inviting and casual atmosphere. Weekly meetings at Hope Community Church - Raleigh Campus Thursdays, 9:45 -11:00 AM. Meeting starts promptly at 10 AM and everyone gets a turn to introduce themselves and their business. Bring elevator speech and sense of humor -- they provide coffee. First meeting is free, after that it’s $3. For more information, visit: caryleadsgroup.net
Chapel Hill Leads
This dynamic group was established in 1998, and affiliated with the Chapel Hill- Carrboro Chamber of Commerce. If you visit, be sure to bring your elevator speech and a notebook, as this group usually attracts 30-40 people from all over Central Carolina. They meet Wednesdays at 8-9:30 AM at the American Legion Post 6 in Chapel Hill. For more information, visit http://www.chapelhillleads.com
Taking Care of Business (TCB)
Sponsored by Score and the Chapel Hill Chamber Of Commerce. Each meeting features a speaker on a topic of interest to small businesses; you have a chance network before and after the presentation. This group is free, but you must preregister. For more information, visit: http://www.carolinachamber.org/TCB
Apex Small Business Network - The Apex Small Business Network meets every Tuesday morning at the Apex Chamber of Commerce located at 220 N Salem Street in Historic Downtown Apex, NC from 9:00am to 10:00am. Find information at: http://www.apexsmallbusinessnetwork.com
Business and Beers -- Meets after work at varied locations (that sell beer) around the Triangle area. You can find this group on Meetup.com
Tech and Start-up Oriented Groups:
These groups feature presentations from start-up businesses. There are chances to network before and after the presentations.
Triangle Tech Breakfast – RTP Frontier or Hunt Library at NC State Centennial Campus
At this monthly breakfast get-together, techies, developers, designers, and entrepreneurs share learn from their peers through show and tell / show-case style presentations.
Find this group on Meetup.com, on their website techbreakfast.co or Facebook facebook.com/techbreakfast
1 Million Cups -- http://www.1millioncups.com/rtp
1 Million Cups is a free, national program designed to educate, engage, and connect entrepreneurs. Meets every Wednesday at the Frontier at RTP. Every week, entrepreneurs present their startup companies to this community, answer questions, and learn how the community can help support their businesses.
Groups with Exclusive seats and Yearly Memberships
Triangle Referral Team (formerly Apex Business Connections)
This group meets the first and third Thursday of the month at the IHOP in Apex from 8 to 9:15 am. They also host a happy hour social event the fourth Wednesday of the month from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm for more relaxed, casual conversations. For more information, go to Meetup.com or the website: https://www.trianglereferralteam.com/
BNI is one of the best-known names in business networking groups. Some people have great results, but also pay significant membership and meeting fees. There are many chapters in the area; it’s a good idea to check and see if there is an open “seat” for your business area before visiting a group. For more information on groups in your area, go to http://trianglebni.com
Women's Networking Groups
WIN – Women in Networking (WIN)
These groups empower women business owners and female entrepreneurs to exchange customer referrals & leads, share knowledge and offer support for professional growth and prosperity. There are locations all over the Triangle, to find one, go to http://win-nc.com
Women’s Power Networking, also called Coffee and Contacts
Also offers networking and support for female business owners. There 9 groups in the Triangle area. To find one near you, go to: http://www.womenspowernetworking.com/index.php/coffee-contacts-chapters
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