Connecting Business – Growing Opportunities

The Benefits of Business Networking in 2022

How networking drives business growth and why it should form an essential part of your 2022 new business drive and growth strategies.

The start of every new year is a marking point for individuals and businesses to reflect on past challenges and successes, and to kick start, with vigour, hopes and priorities for the year ahead, but how many organisations incorporate business networking as a key element into your new year business growth and professional development strategies?

We are approaching nearly two years of the Covid-19 pandemic and the global transformation of how people live and work, adjusting immensely how we interact and communicate, both personally and professionally, with the digital landscape having become a more welcome and user-friendly platform for businesses to engage with a wider range of target audiences and stakeholders. During the crisis, many business leaders have recognised that business networking has becoming a more critical, proactive key priority for ongoing business growth activity.

For Causeway: Ireland Scotland Business Exchange over the last two years, the number of business networking events we hosted increased considerably, with the online digital world enabling us to connect more and more professionals from cities, towns and remote regions of Ireland, Northern Ireland and Scotland than ever before. 

While there are there are various perks and drawbacks to in-person versus virtual networking, one thing is for certain, the benefits business networking delivers for professionals and businesses cannot be underestimated. For any business keen to grow, reach new audiences and explore new leads and opportunities, business networking should be an essential part of your business strategy and priorities in 2022. 

Here’s just some of the top reasons why you should consider incorporating business networking into your growth strategies, and become actively engaged with membership organisations, like Causeway, in 2022:

Networking gives you a platform to pitch and promote your business - showcase your brand

One of the key reasons people attend networking events is to have the opportunity to promote who you are, what your business does, and connect—in an enjoyable waywith an audience of people to showcase and update your business goals, and to explore potential leads and collaborative opportunities. 

By attending networking events, you are effectively a brand ambassador for your business and have the opportunity, through networking, to grow your business’ brand awareness and reach. Effectively, a new audience of people and businesses that may help your business growth ambitions.

As well as general networking with a wide audience of people through one-to-one interactions, many high-profile topical networking events will also offer speaking spotlight and sponsorship opportunities for businesses who wish to boost your business' brand profile and awareness further, by giving you a high profile opportunity to communicate your key marketing messages effectively to a highly engaged target audience of people.

Networking helps you create new connections and explore new market opportunities

For businesses with ambitions to grow and reach new audiences and explore new markets, business networking can provide a critical avenue to help you build up a bank of useful new connections and business leads in your target growth markets. 

Causeway Ambassador Colm Moloney greets President of Ireland, Michael D HigginsFor Causeway, for example, we often welcome to our membership network and events, Irish entrepreneurs or SMEs keen to explore the Scottish market, or Scottish businesses keen to expand to the island of Ireland. Members from both sides of the Irish Sea find huge value in being able to connect and communicate with professionals and businesses in their target growth market, and to have that network of support when trying to establish your business in a new market.

Explaining more about the benefits being part of Causeway gives for expanding to Irish-Scottish markets Colm Moloney, CEO of Red River Archaeology Group Ltd, our Causeway Ambassador and one of our network founders has said: 

“I experienced the challenges of exporting services between Scotland and Ireland for several years prior to the formation of Causeway. Causeway brought like-minded business-people together to overcome some of the challenges of breaking into a new market and made the whole process both easier and a hell of lot more enjoyable!”

Gives you access to alternative-thinking and can spark fresh ideas

For business leaders and professionals, by attending cross-sector networking events, it can give you hugely beneficially opportunities to connect and chat with those outwith your business or in a completely different sector. This can often give you access to alternative viewpoints and wider ways of thinking that can help you in transform your business approach, sparking fresh ideas and could even develop into new collaborations.

Commenting on this, one of our Northern Irish members, Mark McKeown of FK Lowry has said: 

“Although I’ve been involved with other networks, such as Engineers Ireland and the Institute of Civil Engineers in Northern Ireland, the difference with the Causeway network is the distinct synergies between Ireland – North and South, and with Scotland. Those synergies are similar populations; values and outlooks; and approaches to business and friendships.

“Even when you attend a Causeway networking event that isn’t necessarily in your sector, or that you initially think isn’t 100% relevant, you will be very surprised with what you can pick up and learn from other people from across Ireland, Northern Ireland and Scotland in this unique network – that’s what it all boils down to - the key people and relationships you can build through Causeway.”

You become part of a supportive community or 'tribe'

As well as reaching new audiences and building new connections for your business, by joining a membership organisation and being actively involved and regularly attending networking events, you get the opportunity to establish friendships and foster and develop into positive, long-lasting business relationships. 

Feedback we often hear from our Causeway members, is that by joining the network and attending our events regularly, they often get a sense they are ‘part of a tribe’ and that they feel they have a growing supportive network of people to go to informally chat through a business challenge or when seeking professional career advice. 

Our Causeway membership is diverse, representing a cross-sector of professionals, varying from senior business leaders to young professionals in the early stages of their careers, and through our Professional Partners’ Programme, we have been able to formally connect individuals to ensure they are integrated and supported into our network.

Commenting on the value this has brought one our Young Professional members, Jane Crumlish said: 

“Speaking with my professional partner really helped me navigate the uncertain times we all experience when starting out on our early career journeys. Simply listening to his stories about how he navigated his early career, which has now flourished into a phenomenal business, equipped me with confidence and useful wisdoms that I applied when choosing my new role.  

“It’s also been a wonderful opportunity to share some of my experiences as a young professional with someone who can implement positive changes in a company to help those starting out in their careers.”

Being part of a network can tackle isolation and loneliness 

As well facilitating growing business connections, our Causeway network also welcomes Irish, Northern Irish and Scottish diaspora keen to be engaged and part of an Irish-Scottish community, celebrating our shared culture and heritage. 

During the pandemic, for many people, online networking became essential to help battle isolation and loneliness for those remote-working, unable to travel back home, or socialise to see friends. Attending online networking provided a social element that had been lacking for many during lockdown and restrictions. 

In Scotland, one of our long valued Irish diaspora members is Scotland GAA. Sharing the benefit found by being part of the network, Scotland GAA’s Chair Peter Mossey has said:

“By going to Causeway networking events and functions you meet with like-minded people, with shared culture and values. I remember what was said at one of the early Causeway events I attended was – ‘business is not done between businesses; business is done between people!’ – this philosophy has stayed with me.”

Join our Causeway Membership Today - Be part of our Tribe!

We are currently running a special offer, whereby if you join us, or renew your membership with Causeway, before 7 March 2022, you will receive an additional 3 months membership for free. To avail of this offer join online today, with the offer code: 3MONTHSFREE 

Causeway: Ireland Scotland Business Exchange is a not-for-profit membership organisation that represents and connects a growing number of professionals and businesses, from a variety of sectors, across Ireland, Northern Ireland, Scotland and beyond. Join our friendly membership network today and start connecting, communicating and collaborating to help support your business growth ambitions in 2022. Membership categories range from Young Professionals (under-30s rate) to Business Membership rate.

Find out more about the benefits of joining and become a member online today or contact

Author: Aoife O'Sullivan

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About The Author

Aoife O'Sullivan

Aoife O'Sullivan is Causeway's Communications and Events Manager. She is responsible for nurturing the membership engagement activity for Causeway, primarily through hosting events both online and offline in Scotland, Ireland and Northern Ireland, and helps to connect Causeway's members and raise their profile through communications, marketing and PR.


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