Leading the Way to Business Growth

Club's Lead Council helps members develop valuable business opportunities and gain strategic input

by Mark Heffernan, Wharton Club and Leads Council Member

The Wharton Leads Council is an informal networking and referral group comprised of Wharton Club members who meet twice monthly to share business contacts, insights, and referrals. Established only last summer, the quality and scope of new business opportunities and relationships created among its members has far exceeded expectations.

At every meeting without fail, the combined experience and relationships among the group manage to open a door, provide a vital contact, or offer valuable advice to participants. For the many active participants, this has become one of the biggest benefits of Wharton Club of DC membership. Most Leads Council members rate this group as much more effective and enjoyable than other leads and networking groups.

According to Leads Council regular, Jean-Francois Orsini, “It’s these relationships that count. People buy from people, not from e-mail.” Council member, Donna Berry of the Entrepreneur’s Source in Bethesda, emphasizes the importance of familiarity in developing new business opportunities. “People like to buy from people they know or have some connection with – regardless of the business, whether a small business or the federal government.”

With its first anniversary in sight, the Leads Council is set to expand and will be open to new members for a limited time. Current members recommend it enthusiastically as an effective way to generate business leads, develop some new marketing ideas, and complement existing sales/marketing efforts. Heinan Landa, who heads up the Council says, "I find quite a few good leads turn into new business, particularly when they are passed on by people who know us because in a sense, they're pre-qualified with a need for our services."

The Council deliberately seeks a diverse membership in terms of industry and profession. It is presently on the lookout for new members, particularly in the areas of advertising, direct marketing, business and estate law, litigation, general accounting, and business banking. The atmosphere is relaxed and informal, yet professional and confidential.

For more information or to inquire about prospective membership, Wharton Club members should contact Heinan Landa by e-mail at hlanda@optimalnetworks.com or by phone at 240-499-7900 x105.