Is Your Network Too Introspective?
Add in some diversity ...
POSTED BY JACKY SHERMAN ON 14/02/2018 @ 8:00AM
Last week, I wrote about building a close network of people around you who have access to the sort of people you want as clients. However, is your network too introspective? It could be too limiting ...
Is your network too introspective or is it filled with lots of diversity?
copyright: rawpixel / 123rf stock photo
Here's the extreme to make that point. If everyone you know only knows the same people that you know, then they can only introduce you to people you already know. So where's the new business to come from?
"Here are some tips on how to diversify
Talk yourself into it. If talking to strangers is hard then you're going to have to make an effort to do it. So what will motivate you? Some possibilities spring to mind:
You want to sell more of your product and services
You want to be more valuable to others
Gain new interests
Learn something new
Enlighten new people
Become more interesting yourself
Are you willing to face your prejudices/fears?
How limited is your network? Try this little exercise to find out. List everyone you talk to in the last month. Go through your diary, emails, messages and any other channel you can think of. What sort of people do you spend most of your time with? Check against this list:
Style (trendy, loud, reserved etc)
Marital status/sexual orientation
Location - personal
Location - business
Who is introducing you to useful contacts and potential clients? Where are your biases? What sort of people do you spend most of your time with, who do you rarely/never mix with? What might happen if you did?
Grow out of your network. If you're very shy, reserved or introspective, the chances are you're still reluctant to mix with different people so dip your toe in the water rather than dive in the deep end.
Get the people you already know to introduce you. Who do you know who mixes with different people to you? A lynchpin who can introduce you to people you would never normally meet. Maybe they have a very different client group or they are a lot younger or older than you. Maybe they have a hobby you've never explored or go to a pub you've never visited?
If you're anything like me, you get loads of invitations to events that you mostly don't accept. Why not go to one you would normally turn down? Take a friend and you can always leave if it's too horrendous when you get there.
Last week, I talked about attending events populated by people who are like you. Well, next time spend a few minutes finding out about someone at one of these events that you usually would ignore!"
I'll leave the last word to Dr. Ivan Misner who inspired this blog post:
''Find others who do not sound like you, speak like you, or have your background, education, or history. The only thing that they should have in common with you and the other people in your network is that they should be really good at what they do. Create a personal network like that and you'll have a network that can help you succeed at anything..''
So is your network too introspective? If you'd like to talk further about diversifying it, or referral marketing in general, do call me on 07970 638857 or click here to ping me an email and let's see how I can help you.
Until next time ...
More about Jacky Sherman ...
I help people build and maintain productive working relationships both with their work colleagues and with a wider network to win more business. I do this by combining my skills in coaching, mediation and training with my extensive experience in senior management.
What I love most about my work is when my clients get those a-ha moments because I know they have seen for themselves the way that they want to move forward. Then they will achieve their ambitions.
Helping people who are having challenges with their working relationships gives me enormous pleasure. It was my privilege when working in health care to see how people working together can make the impossible seem easy and accomplish miracles as a result.
So helping people build or restore strong relationship with their colleagues makes even the hardest work easier, alleviates distress for the individual and reduces problems for the whole organisation.
In all this work trust is an essential ingredient to winning business so most of my work comes through referrals. Referrals come through strong business relationships so it was a natural extension for me to work with Ascentiv and train others in how to get consistent and predictable referrals from their network.
What a fantastic way to earn a living!
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