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Monday, June 24, 2013

You Don't Know What You're Missing

What is the risk involved in speaking with someone new? Not too much, unless you think they are going to try to sell you something. Suddenly the person appears as a  threat to your time, energy, and money.

missing something

How are people perceiving you? Are you missing out on a genuine opportunity because someone in the equation feels like they are about to be pitched to?
Take this quiz to find out how approachable you are.

  • How many times are you willing to attend a networking event before you get business out of it?
  • When you enter a networking event, do you immediately go toward the people you know, or toward strangers hoping they need your product or service?
  • Do you spend most of the conversation time at networking events focusing on the other person, or do you tend to monopolize the conversation?
  • Do you connect with people on Linked In and other social media sites and stay in touch with them over time?
  • Do you ever bring guests with you to a networking event?
  • Out of all the people you know from networking, what percentage of them would you say are friends?
  • Do you ever get together with some of your networking friends outside of work hours?
The answers to these questions will be different for everyone but they should provide some insight into your motivation during networking events. Make that time about helping other people first, and you will find what you have been missing; valuable relationships with other business people. Earning trust, and new clients, takes time and patience.
Joanne Randall

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Accept No Substitutes

You can read, listen, and watch all you want, but there is no substitute for experience. Too bad.
Experience can be very costly; money, time, relationships, and reputation.Embarrasement
We have all lived life's embarrassing moments. I have had my share as well. No one likes to play the fool and embarrassing situations are certainly some of the hardest lessons learned due to pride.  Most people can eventually laugh at themselves and their inexperience and move on. If I can't be an inspiration, I can at least be an example (of what NOT to do).
Loss of time spent on foolish endeavors is a toughie since you can't get that time back. But usually the lesson learned has enough intrinsic value that it doesn't seem like a complete loss. And there is usually a good story to tell afterwards. Long afterwards.
Loss of money certainly hurts, and is akin to loss of opportunity. The good news is that you can always make more money. These lessons are often repeated as they usually represent an underlying problem of self-control to some degree or another.  If you kick yourself regularly, just know you are in good company.
The cost of one's reputation can be tricky. If it is a public matter, all parties involved will never recover completely, but most can usually summon up enough support from their loyal fans to gather momentum and start fresh. How many comebacks have you witnessed? Music, business, financial, politics, you name it.  The bigger they are the harder they fall.
The last category is the most important. Relationships are crucial in life, and in business. No person in their death bed ever said, "I wish I had spent more time at work." Once damaged, a relationship has the potential to go in any direction.  It could end, possibly resulting in damage to reputation. There is no such thing in relationships as damage control. Once damaged, it is nearly impossible to restore, sometimes you can't even restore it to be in existence. Nothing is more important than relationships. Quality of life depends on them. We seek them out. Nurture them. Cherish them. Then take them for granted.
No amount of success in business is worth one iota of damage to a personal relationship. Always put them first and everything else falls into place.
Joanne Randall