[Revised: 09/06/2015] Business Village Membership Operating Policy
Our primary objective is to expand and develop Business Village as a popular and valuable business networking organisation which consistently delivers real benefits and value to all members and guests attending our networking meetings and events.
Our aim at Business Village is to offer a completely flexible networking opportunity, but we wish to avoid a situation where there is mass duplication of services offered by one or more of our members.
Business Village therefore will allow more than one member to represent a particular service. This means that one existing member cannot block another prospective member from joining the group simply because they are promoting the same services. (Though we would hope that the two parties would be able to mutually agree to put their focus on different aspects of their business rather than compete directly on the same services when it comes to representing themselves/their business at the Round Table meetings.)
When a situation arises where two members within Business Village are promoting the same services (and assuming they are conforming to the attendance guidelines laid out in this document) – if a third party wishes to join and promote the same services then it would be up to the two existing members to agree on the third party joining Business Village. The existing members will be expected to meet with the potential new member and look for a compromise regarding the promotion of the overlapping services – our objective will always be to find a workable agreement to allow the new member to join. In the event that an agreement cannot be reached and subject to review by the Membership Secretary (‘MS’),the prospective new member’s application will be declined. The applicant could still attend as a guest however if he chose to do so.
Guests are always welcome to attend any of our meetings; all we ask is that those wishing to attend (including members and non-members) to please register on our web site beforehand so that numbers can be managed on behalf of the hotel for the breakfast service.
1) First time visitors
It will be left to the discretion of the person chairing the meeting as to whether or not new visitors / guests can join in with the 1 minute round table referral session. This is to avoid any awkward situations arising or conflict between new visitors and existing members. If the new visitor/guest is from a business that does not overlap in any way with two or more existing members then the visitor will be invited to speak.
2) Applications to become a Business Village Member (BV Member Registration form and registration process)
Please note: There will be an initial admin fee of £25 payable on registration, and an annual fee for following years of £20, to cover our administration costs and the general promotion of BV to the benefit of all members.
Please note: Prospective Members are required to attend at least two Business Village meetings before their applications can be considered.
Applications will be assessed and approved (or not as the case may be) by the MS. This is to avoid direct duplication of the services already offered by two or more of our members for the reasons stated above.
Prospective members will be asked to specify (on the form) what their business is about – if they are not in direct competition with two or more existing members then their application is likely to be approved immediately.
When the membership application form is received, the Registrations Manager will decide if there is a potential duplication of services (at which point he will contact the existing members and seek their views. If they are happy to allow a new member to join then the applicant will be approved once they have attended two consecutive Business Village sessions.
If the existing members feel that the overlap is significant, then the MS will arrange for the new applicant to meet with those potentially affected at a convenient time – ideally the next BV meeting. The purpose of that meeting will be to try and establish agreement about the business that the new member can promote at the round table networking sessions.
Please note: The existing members’ should always try and find a way of accommodating the new member so that they can join freely and enhance the BV experience. However if the overlap and duplication of services is so great that there is no room for compromise, then the MS will inform the applicant that they are unable to become a member at this time and they will be unable to speak at the round table networking events. They will however be welcome to attend any of the Presentation sessions.
If a new member has several businesses or business interests, some of which might overlap with existing members, then we would expect the new member only to promote the business area that was agreed in accepting his/her membership application.
3) Members Pages on BV Website
All BV members will have the option of a profile on the BV website to help promote their company and services. As well as a description, contact details, and links to their own websites, members can benefit from other social media related benefits.
Please note: If there is a competitor for their place then the BV member must maintain regular attendance – i.e. attending at least once a month over an average of three months. Failure to do so without good reason could result in the membership being withdrawn.
4) Presentation Slots
Presentations by BV members can only be given by them as individuals unless permission is given for another person to present on that subject on their behalf.
Finally we would like to reiterate our intention and desire to expand and develop Business Village as a popular and valuable business networking organisation which consistently delivers real benefits and value to all its members (and guests) attending our networking meetings and events.
Our aim is to offer a flexible networking opportunity with all the benefits that this brings, whilst avoiding a direct duplication of the services already offered by one or more of our members. This will ensure that we continue to have friendly, open networking meetings where referrals can be freely given without any awkward situations arising due to overlapping of services already being offered by other members.
Indemnity and exclusion of liability
Use of the website and the networking service is at your own risk.
You are solely responsible for your conduct and interaction with other users of the website and the networking service.
Business Village members and committee members will not be held responsible or liable for any matters arising directly or indirectly from your use of the website and/or the networking service or for any economic loss, loss of goodwill or reputation or otherwise, including but not limited to:-
- The conduct of any user of the website
- Any technical or other failure of the website
- Your attendance at Business Village events and meetings
- Any dealings that you have with any users of the website and/or the networking service
- Any subsequent arrangements, contracts, agreements or business relationships that you may enter into with any person (whether or not a member or otherwise) as a result of or facilitated by your use of the website or networking service
- You agree to indemnify Business Village and its members and committee members on a full indemnity basis against loss, damage, costs and expenses which may be suffered directly or indirectly as a result of your use of the website and the networking service
These terms and conditions are subject to amendment from time to time at the discretion of the committee members.
Amended terms shall become effective as soon as they are placed on the website and your continued use of the website and networking service constitutes acceptance by you of the updated terms.
All implied warranties, terms and conditions relating to the website and networking service are hereby excluded.