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BNI Minnesota & Northern Wisconsin
PO Box 390405
Minneapolis, MN 55439

Phone: 612-664-9500
Fax: 952-920-6496


Benefits of Membership

BNI members tend to find value in one (or more) of the following areas:

  • Business Generated – Helping you reach your financial goals faster.
  • Teamwork and Energy – Working together, supporting each other and having fun!
  • Relationships and Trust – The opportunity to develop long-lasting, meaningful relationships.
  • Structure and Learning – Staying on-task while growing personally and professionally.

Our Mission

Our mission is to help members increase their business through a structured, positive, and professional referral marketing program that enables them to develop long-term, meaningful relationships with quality business professionals.

Givers Gain®

BNI's philosophy is Givers Gain® – by giving business to others, you will get business in return. As a result, BNI has become the most successful organization of its type in the world. There are currently thousands of chapters with tens of thousands of members. BNI members have passed millions of referrals, that have generated billions of dollars in closed business.

BNI's Core Values

BNI’s Core Values have been the key to creating a culture that allows busy business professionals to learn how to convert their social capital into financial capital in a genuine and lasting way.

  1. Givers Gain®
  2. Lifelong Learning
  3. Traditions + Innovation
  4.  Positive Attitude
  5.  Building Relationships
  6. Accountability
  7. Recognition

BNI's Code of Ethics

BNI's Code of Ethics has been established by members to help create an environment where business professionals can focus on helping each other reach their goals.

Upon acceptance to BNI, I agree to abide by the following Code of Ethics during the tenure of my participation in the organization.

  1. I will provide the quality of services at the prices I have quoted.
  2. I will be truthful with the members and their referrals.
  3. I will build good will and trust among members and their referrals.
  4. I will take responsibility for following up on the referrals I receive.
  5. I will display a positive and supportive attitude.
  6. I will live up to the ethical standards of my profession.

Professional standards outlined in a formal code of conduct for any profession supersede the above standards. This means that a member belonging to a profession that has a more stringent standard must adhere to that higher standard.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What do the membership participation fees cover?
A: Most people see only the tip of the iceberg when looking at BNI. BNI is a global marketing organization that has expenses like every other business including: staffing, marketing, advertising, administration, communications, operational overhead, online support, training, and special projects.

Q: Can anyone apply for membership?
A: We accept only one person per professional specialty. So, if the specialty that you represent within your industry is already represented in a chapter, we can help you find another chapter with an opening, or we can help you start a new chapter.

Q: Can a company be represented in more than one BNI chapter?
A: Yes. Many companies find value in encouraging their employees to get connected in BNI. Each individual within that company may apply for membership in a BNI chapter.

Q: Can an individual be a member in more than one BNI chapter?
A: No. An individual cannot be a member in a second BNI chapter, nor in any other group that allows only one person per profession and whose primary purpose is to pass referrals to one another, because it substantially reduces their commitment to the chapter members.

Q: How does BNI compare to other community and service organizations?
A: BNI compliments and often partners with community and service organizations such as Chambers, Rotary Clubs, Lions, Kiwanis, etc. In fact, BNI strongly encourages their members to participate and get involved. These organizations give individuals the opportunity to give back and expand their network.

Q: If I specialize in a field within my profession, am I expected to be an expert in all aspects of my profession?
A: BNI understands that many professions are broad and that people often specialize within their profession. BNI does not expect, nor does it encourage, any professional to participate in an area in which the professional does not have expertise. On the contrary, BNI prohibits professionals from acting outside of the scope of their abilities.

Q: My profession does not let me directly solicit business. Is BNI still right for me?
A: BNI’s primary objective is to assist its members in ways to improve their business and to educate them concerning how they can effectively network. Business people get business when their expertise is known and others reach a comfort level with them. BNI provides a forum that allows members to meet other business peers who need to know effective and efficient business people.

Q: How do you know new members are reputable?
A: Each applicant is sponsored by a member of the chapter and the applicant provides two references that are checked by the chapter's Membership Committee. In addition, over-the-phone or in-person interviews are often done to ensure the applicant is a good fit for the chapter.

Q: What if a member gets a referral and does poor work?
A: All members agree to abide by a Code of Ethics which includes providing the "quality of services at the prices that are quoted." All Code of Ethics violations are handled by a chapter's Membership Committee.

Q: What occupations benefit the most from networking?
A: It is not the occupation that succeeds in relationship marketing, it is the individual. Those who have great attitudes, embrace the philosophy of Givers Gain® and engage in training are the ones who often find the most value in BNI.

Q: Are members supposed to bring visitors?
A: You are encouraged to bring visitors (potential members) and guests (potential shoppers) to your chapter meeting. Members find tremendous value in expanding their network and connecting with more people.

Q: Do ethical rules for certain professions prohibit participation in BNI?
A: BNI understands the importance of the ethical concerns governing certain professions and acknowledges that rules can differ by location. As such, BNI therefore requires its members to uphold the rules of its profession so as not to violate the professional’s ethical obligations. In the event that BNI’s general rules could potentially violate a professional’s ethical code, BNI’s rules are superseded by the dictates of the professional’s ethics code. Significantly, a primary objective of BNI is to educate its membership in ways to market and grow business. It is BNI’s intent to ensure that this is permitted.