When I had a travel agency in 1990s when the Gulf War was just beginning, I had five employees and an $8,500 a month overhead. In travel dollars that meant I had to sell at least $85,000 a month to earn 10%.

I had head about a leads group that met on Tuesday mornings, but I was so shy that it took me 6 months to work up the courage to attend it. The very first meeting I was given three leads by people I met for the first time. I was amazed.

One of the leads turned out to be my second largest client ever. The other two also did business with me, and that was the beginning of a new awareness for me.

I joined every leads group I could find. I scoured every newspaper and every resource I could find to develop the kind of leads everyone else needed. I became a resource for those who were in my leads group as well as my clients. I developed relationships that even today, are steadfast.

What I learned about being in networking groups is that it is the easiest way of developing  strong relationships in the business community. It also took me from $30,000 a month in sales to $185,000 a month in a three year time period.