Networking Mistake #2
Last week I shared with you, as a direct result of talking to some of you, one of the major problems business owners have with networking.
I now want to share with you the second mistake.
There are many variations to this challenge that business owners create for themselves, however at the core of it is this.
You are not clear on how you are creating value for your connections.
And NO I’m not talking about the widget you sell or the service you deliver. This isn’t the aim in creating value. This approach causes you problem and gets you into the ‘sleazy salesman’ reputation. You don’t want that.
At the heart of this problem is this: You don’t understand the value proposition and assume the sale, assume to much.
As a networker you are focused on getting more sales and networking is just one of your strategies. Here are some of the problems this causes:
- Focused on selling not building relationships
- The flip of this where you spend years building relationships and never ask for the sale
- Not interested in what potential/future connections really want or need and just try and force your product or service down their throat.
- No process to follow that allows you to be confident in how to deal with connections in a way that is congruent with your values and approach
- Assumption is the mother of all mistakes
- You lose people and connections
- You don’t listen you talk to much
- You end up attempting to ‘sell’ what you want not what they need
An example of all this is one of our members, he’s been with us a long time, is growing an amazing business and is an EPIC businessman. He is also a really good sharer. Quite often guests and other members misread this and try and ‘force’ their product/service/agenda onto him. Most of the time he’s not interested. They haven’t taken time to understand what he wants or was sharing and take it as an opportunity to feather their nest.
There are a couple of things you can do to change this in your approach.
The first one is to enter conversations with new connections to explore. Ask them questions, investigate, understand what they are going through, what they want and what’s frustrating them.
Bernard Buchard says “If you can communicate your customers fears and frustrations better than them, they will automatically assume you can solve them.”
The next one is create an engagement process that takes them from not knowing you, through trusting you to a A-Grade Customer. Don’t make this up each time or leave it to chance, don’t assume you naturally know how to do this. Spend time and create a world class flow.
The third strategy to change this problem is to value each and every connection. Treat them like gold. Treat the person who introduced you like royalty and be grateful for their efforts.
Overall, its recommended to do the following to overcome this problem in your networking:
- Explore your connections world
- Create an Engagement Process
- Value your connections and their connectors
So, which strategy do you need to focus on? (1, 2 or 3)