One of my core philosophies is, one good idea or one good connection can change your business or your life.
This is the foundation of Small Business University. As a venue meeting people in a networking setting, it’s also a resource for absorbing the knowledge and experience of others who share their expertise on our stage, on this website, and in our printed newsletter.
This and the next 2 blog posts here are on the subject of
Ever since I started executing the 3i System of Sales & Influence™, not only has it become easier for me to get more appointments with people, but more prospective clients have approached me first!
Even if you’re not in sales, the principles in the system are very useful and to get what we want, we all need to be better at the game of influence. As business owners, sales professionals, parents and employees, the power of influence is a key element in elevating our chances of success whether for making more money or teaching our children.
Information has value. People pay for information. We pay for books. We pay for newspapers. We subscribe to magazines, take classes, go to seminars and attend Small Business University events in order to consume information. We tend to trust those people who volunteer information we feel is valuable. We tend to view them in a positive light. Most of all, we tend to reciprocate to those who give us good information. We reciprocate by giving them more of our attention and often, giving them our business.
In a networking environment, we’re usually put off by those people who request a follow up appointment immediately after the first contact. Successful relationships require a bit of romance. This is true of intimate relationships as well as business relationships. Sure, there are exceptions, but even then, long-term relationships are rare when the courting process is short.
When you share information, you are looked upon as intelligent, empathetic, an expert and not desperate to make a sale. Your credibility rises and your influence rises as well. It’s powerful.
What kind of information should you share?
Don’t share information about you, your company or your product. Keep your eyes open for new information on useful technology, information you think your prospect will be interested in on a personal level, or find some industry-related trends which could be helpful in his or her business or marketplace. Now, when YOU consume information, look at it in a new light and ask “who else in my circle of influence could this help?”
I write a monthly newsletter. It’s a resource you can pull ideas from to use for your new “swipe file” of useful information. Subscribe to it. Small Business University events are also a rich resource you can leverage for material.