Networked Businesses: The Act of Business Networking on a Grand Scale

by WorkFromHome on November 3, 2011

It’s likely that you’ve heard the term used in commercials before: a company announces that it is part of a “family” or is a “networked business.” For many of the largest businesses in the world, this is the preferred method of both operating their businesses and networking with professionals in the field. Rather than send their individual businesspeople on the road to network with other businesspeople form competing or complimentary corporations, they simply enter into a networked business agreement with those competitors or complimentary businesses.

This allows a business to, for example, have an exclusive network of suppliers that only their business gets to take advantage of. Perhaps a computer manufacturer creates a business network of chip manufacturers, computer display makers, and accessories developers. They might even contract with a company of programmers and give them exclusive access to the company’s upcoming products and programs. Both sides benefit: the larger company gets the expertise and manufacturing follow-through of its exclusive network, while the smaller companies in the network get the benefit of guaranteed work and profits that will be generated using the larger company’s clout.

Benefits of Networked Business

Not only do all of the businesses involved in this sort of network benefit from each other, but the actual method of operating a networked business is superior to the old fashioned approaches used by many businesses in the past. First and foremost, the approach taken by many companies to a network business is more open and free-flowing than the traditional managed network of affiliates and suppliers. If a company in the network decides that it no longer wishes to be a part of it, and would like to strike out on its own once again, they’re free to do so.

And because the network is built in an open and free-flowing way, it is safeguarded against just such an occurrence. It’s easy to let another business in to fill the gap left by a departing supplier or affiliate; and they will reap all of the same benefits as every other company in the network.

In fact, this type of free-flowing approach often spurs competition among suppliers; each of these smaller suppliers wants to be contracted by a larger company and invited to be part of a networked business environment, and they’ll compete on price and innovation until they’ve met their goal. For businesspeople, this means lower overhead when producing their signature products; for consumers, this means a faster pace of development and advancement that results in more advanced products that demand continually lower prices.

Networked Business as a Breeding Ground

This competition that occurs among suppliers, in an effort to gain the attention and inclusion of a networked business, ultimately results in many smaller businesses becoming larger success stories. Once they have successfully engaged in the type of price-cutting, innovation-fostering process that a networked business requires, they’re primed to take on the wide business world on their own. They’ve often spent time developing a larger team of highly skilled individuals, helped along by the larger profits they gained as part of a business-to-business network.

For this reason, a complete networked business can often be thought of as a great opportunity for a small business that needs the kind of recognition, demand, sales, and profit that enable it to grow.

Finding a Place in the Networked Business

Ultimately, however, winning a spot in a networked business’ line of suppliers, affiliates, and manufacturers comes at the hand of traditional business networking events that involve mere individuals instead of entire corporations. It is at these business networking events that small business owners can first pitch their company’s prices and products to the executives responsible for handling larger firms’ commitments to a network of affiliates.

That’s why business networking goes hand-in-hand with networked business, and it’s a great example of how networking isn’t just for individuals or executives, but actually works to ensure the success of entire competing and complimentary corporate entities. A good business develops a network that ensures its success, whether it’s at the center of that network or merely on the periphery. And a an even more successful business knows how to work its way from that periphery to the center of its own network of businesses.

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