Much can be said about attitude, planning, scheduling, etc. However, I believe that momentum is the single most important factor in whether or not I will reach my personal and professional goals each year. Momentum is defined as a “strength or force gained by motion or through the development of events.”
Ironically, there does seem to be a “strength or force” at work when momentum is reached. It’s that feeling when time begins to fly by, weeks feel shorter, and appointments seem to schedule themselves. There is little stress or tiredness, because things are in a groove. Momentum has provided you with an enhanced state of mind, more focus in meetings, and a sense of comfort in asking for the business. Smaller deals close quicker and bigger deals seem to find your desk.
For those like me who are in a long-cycle selling process, my tip for reaching momentum is to partner up with someone in your business that can hold you accountable to your goals and help keep you on track. There are 101 reasons why people do not want/need your products or solutions in this economy. Having a partner can keep you fresh, shares in the workload, and provides a safe environment for constructive criticism to modify best practices.
In my business, the one who hears the most no’s, typically has also heard the most yeses! Some of those no’s take up a great deal of time and can much more easily be forgotten or pushed to a later date with the support of a partner in the deal. Getting caught up in these situations can get you off track and just as easily flip momentum against you. So, team up… and stay on the positive side of momentum. That’s where the money is!
Most people who I meet at networking events admittedly do not have a networking plan. Quick question… Why not?
Before I go off on some 2 or 3 paragraph blog post about networking, understand that I too was this person. I would pick networking events hoping to find a meeting or a sale. I thought the purpose of the event was for me to make a connection that would result in some sort of financial gain for me. As you can imagine, with this mentality…it didn’t take me long to find myself going to events, collecting a ton of cards, but not finding the results that I expected.
Once you have fallen for this trap, it’s much easier to tell yourself that “networking events are a waste of time,” instead of identifying the true cause of failure. So, here is what I recommend…
- Have a purpose or goal
- Identify verticals & associations to target
- Connect with subject matter experts (I prefer LinkedIn for this)
- Pick the right events/develop plan specific for that event
- Work like hell to get a deal for your new connections.
What was missing from that list of 5? Exactly…nowhere does it mention anything about me and financial gain. I view networking as the best way for me to meet the experts in the verticals that I want to target, and a way to be involved with my connections to bring real deal flow to them and their business. This simple 5-step approach has built great friends, referral sources, and most importantly….clients.
Are you already doing this? Or, do you have a suggestion on ways to make networking more effective? Let me know below, I welcome any/all feedback.
This week, I had the privilege of co-founding the launch of the Advisory Board Members Group for C-level executives on LinkedIn. The group provides a venue for members to share ideas, provide advice, and answer questions to assist each other.
Group owner, Rich Becerra (Consultant and Advisory Board Member) in Central Florida, came up with the idea after voluntarily serving on several company boards over the last 5 years. Becerra has seen first hand the effect an Advisory Board can have on a small business. In 2009, one of his assigned companies that he advises was mentioned in the Wall Street Journal for reporting growth in such a difficult economy. In the owner’s words, because of her Advisors, the company expected “to be up 5%, compared with no growth in 2008.”
The group has already amassed over 50 executives and Rich expects this number to continue to grow at a rapid pace. “An Advisory Board is a powerful management tool that no business should be without.” said Becerra. “I encourage individuals that serve or have served in an advisory capacity to visit LinkedIn, and ask to be a part of the group…we’d love to have you and always look to add quality people to our network.”
If you are interested in joining the group, click on the Advisory Board Members logo to submit your request. Talk soon…