My First Time Networking As a New Entrepreneur and What I Learned.

I’ll never forget my first networking event as a brand new entrepreneur. 


Of course, I’d been to networking events before, but they were for my j-o-b.


As a corporate consultant, I had an identity as a kick-butt Project Manager for a consulting company. I knew what I did every single day, and I felt darn good about it. Now, I was venturing into new territory.


I had just (fearfully) resigned from that corporate job that had been paying my comfortable, six-figure salary in pursuit to live my new-found purpose and fly solo on my own.


I knew I was supposed to network. I needed to “put myself out there” so that I could meet other women entrepreneurs -- especially because that’s who I knew in my heart that I was meant to serve.


So, after doing some research, I found a local women’s networking group and showed up precisely at the start time (because the early bird gets the worm, right?).


I put on my corporate “uniform.” A black dress, high-heels, and the perfect amount of jewelry (not too much...but not too little). Grabbed my hot-off-the-press business cards that read “Business Consultant,” and off I went.


I walked in the room and immediately went to the registration table to get my “Hello My Name Is…” name tag, in my best handwriting, wrote “Terra Bohlmann” with a black sharpie, and slapped that baby on the right side of my chest. 


Then, I paused. 


I stood there alone because everyone in the room was already talking to other people or in small, exclusive little groups. 


I knew no one. That reality hit me hard. 


I had never felt more alone in my life.


After a few minutes, a woman took pity on me and struck up a conversation.


She asked (the dreaded question), “So, what do you do?”


I awkwardly stumbled through what I thought I did which I **pretty much** made up because I didn’t have any customers yet. 


I didn’t get the sense that I “nailed” my elevator pitch because she proceeded to tell me all about how she had a “super successful” insurance business but also sold real estate on the side.


Pretty soon, I figured out that everyone at that "networking event" was trading pitches and not trading business strategies (or encouragement).


By the end of the afternoon, I could sense that no one in the room was comfortable. And no one was being authentic.


On the drive home, I couldn’t stop obsessing over how this whole process could be better. 


I needed the support of women around me that were building their businesses.


Sharing the highs, sharing the lows, and bestowing their success secrets to help fast-track my business success.


I just needed to know how to get my first three customers.


I didn’t want to feel alone. 


I wanted to feel safe to ask for the support I needed.


And I definitely didn’t want to beg for my old job back.


So, off I went to find the right networking community. There were some great ones and some not-so-great ones. 


At one event six-months later, I saw me, except it wasn’t me. It was a woman named Carrie. 


Carrie looked just like I did, down to the same high-heels. She was shy and projected insecurity and discomfort.


She reminded me of myself just six months prior.


I went up to Carrie immediately. I didn’t ask her, “so, what do you do?”


Instead, I told her that I loved her high-heels and asked how her drive was to the event.


I made her feel safe.


We got lost in conversation, and then she admitted to me that she was new in business, and her sales were zero.


Guess what I did? I gave her my personal success secrets on how I got my first five (paying) customers.


* * *


This experience taught me that I had a gift for helping women feel safe and connected.


I knew there was a need to help connect women entrepreneurs together.


So, I stepped up to the plate and built a community where high-achieving women trade business strategies, not pitches.


I didn't build this for myself or what I could get out of it. I built it for you.


I never want any woman entrepreneur to feel alone.


Whether you are just starting out or you’ve been in business for a while, I want you to find the right group to help you get to your next level.


Because a like-minded, trusted community is powerful.

Women who share insights help fast-track each other.

We are all better together.



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