How Starting a Professional Networking Group in Your Area Can Create Occupational Opportunities and Community Relationships.

Starting a professional networking group in your area can be a rewarding endeavour, providing opportunities for career advancement, knowledge sharing, and relationship building within your industry or community. Here are some tips and tricks to for starting a professional networking group, along with insights from Australian academic articles:

  1. Identify the Purpose and Audience: Clarify the purpose and target audience of your networking group. Determine whether it will be industry-specific (e.g. Agricultural sector), career-focused (e.g. Accountants) or geared towards a particular demographic (e.g. early career professionals). Understanding the needs and interests of potential members will help you tailor the group’s activities and offerings.

Tip: Conduct surveys or informal interviews with professionals in your area to gauge interest and gather feedback on potential topics and activities for the networking group.

Abstract group of crowded colorful people illustration. Network of people. Pulse of the Crowd. Multiple colored.

  1. Choose a Platform and Format: Decide on the platform and format for your networking group, whether it’s in-person meetups, virtual events, online forums, or a combination of these. Consider factors such as accessibility, convenience, cost of venue, and the preferences of your target audience.

Tip: Utilise online platforms such as LinkedIn, Meetup, or Facebook groups to create a digital presence for your networking group and facilitate communication among members.

  1. Establish Clear Goals and Guidelines: Define clear goals and guidelines for the networking group, including its objectives, and expected contribution from members. Communicate these guidelines transparently to ensure a positive and inclusive environment for networking and collaboration.

Tip: Consider organising the group with a colleague or someone in your network to ease the burden of handling the organisation of the group by yourself.

  1. Promote and Recruit Members: Promote your networking group through various channels, such as social media, professional networks, local business associations, local media outlets and industry events. Highlight the benefits of joining, such as access to networking opportunities, professional development resources, and peer support.

Tip: Leverage your existing connections and ask members to invite their colleagues and contacts to expand the group’s reach. Offering incentives such as early access to events or exclusive content can also incentivise membership.

  1. Plan Engaging Events and Activities: Organise regular events and activities that cater to the interests and needs of your members. These may include networking mixers, panel discussions, workshops, skill-building sessions, or informal meetups. Be creative and responsive to feedback to keep members engaged and invested in the group.

Tip: Collaborate with local businesses, industry experts, and academic institutions to host events and provide valuable content and resources for members.

  1. Foster Community and Connection: Cultivate a sense of community and connection among members by facilitating meaningful interactions, collaboration, and knowledge sharing. Encourage members to actively participate, contribute their expertise, and support each other’s professional growth and development.

Delegates networking at conference, group of business people talking at networking event sharing and discussing new innovation at business conference

Tip: Regularly solicit feedback from members to ensure that the networking group continues to meet their needs and expectations. Create opportunities for members to showcase their work, achievements, and contributions to the community.

By carefully researching your audience, bringing in organisational assistance and continuing to refine your groups offering, you can establish a vibrant and successful professional networking group in your area.


  1. Australian Journal of Management. “Group Dynamics and Organisational Behaviour.” Accessed February 28, 2024.
  2. Australian Journal of Management. “Event Planning and Engagement Strategies.” Accessed February 28, 2024.