Let’s Get Intentional!
As fall is in full swing, the kids are back in school, football is in full season, and business owners are back to business, it’s time to get intentional about what we do with our time.
Here are 5 fundamentals for a focused fall:
- Schedule your business development activities. Small business owners, as a general rule, got into business so they can help people. Sometimes when we get busy (or create busy-ness ) our sole priority becomes our deliverables, serving our clients. As successful business owners, we must always have business development in our calendars. If we have no clients, we have no business. Focusing on consistent business development is a fundamental must.
- Schedule time for one to one meetings with your referral relationships. This is also business development. I know it can feel like too much fun to meet someone for coffee, lunch, or even happy hour; however, as long as you talk about business and how you can help each other, this is very effective business building time. Referral business comes from deeper relationships. The more we know about each other’s businesses, the easier it is to refer each other. The more we know like and trust each other, the easier it is to refer each other.
Hold your appointments. Whether you scheduled to meet with a prospect, client, business associate, or circle of influence professional, make sure you keep your appointments. You might be wondering why I would point this out, it seems pretty obvious, right? Unfortunately, I hear lots of complaints in my local business community about being stood up on appointments. If you need to reschedule, reschedule. I would recommend rescheduling as little as possible. The more you reschedule the more you get the reputation as unreliable. Hold your appointments. I believe when we hold our appointments we are showing our respect for the other person. Everyone is busy, it feels disrespectful to me when I have arranged my schedule to meet with someone and they flake. It makes it hard for me to respect them enough to refer them. I also highly recommend holding your appointments with yourself. When you miss appointments with yourself, you’re giving yourself the message that you’re not as important, and that can damage our mindset (and keeping a positive mindset as a business owner is essential).
- Schedule time for referral giving and relationship building activities. I work with my clients on specific activities they can do to generate business for their referral relationships and improve the quality of that relationship deeper. If you want to build relationships and referrals, schedule time for the giving activities. Referrals are based on the law of reciprocity. We must give in order to receive. Some simple relationship and referral generating activities include:
- Writing a personal, hand written note
- Making a connection or introduction
- Giving a referral
- Announcing or promoting a referral source’s event or workshop
- Inviting people you know may be interested to a referral source’s workshop or event
- Networking with a referral partner and promoting and edifying them to others
- Schedule social and networking events. Social time is great to build bonds in our relationships. When we feel a deeper connection, we are more passionate about helping each other. Take the time to grab a drink or “break bread” together. We need time to have a little fun, bounce ideas off each other, and “talk shop” in a social environment. It’s also important to get out to those networking events. I find networking events to be very well attended in the fall. These are great opportunities to expand your network, make connections for your referral relationships, promote other people, and find referrals and business opportunities for your referral network. When we get into the holiday season there are many social and networking opportunities, take advantage!
There are two things I strongly believe: (1) Being reliable is being referable. The more reliable you are, the more referable you are. (2) When we do the right giving activities it will result in business for ourselves. The more we give the more we receive.
So being intentional with a giving mindset and focusing on these 5 fundamentals, will not only create an amazing fall, it will set up the New Year for success!
Bonus resource: People ask me how I keep my calendar. I use a paper calendar and my iPhone calendar. I absolutely love the Passion Planner, which is the paper calendar I currently use. It helps me plan monthly, weekly, and daily with prompts for keeping focused throughout and monthly recaps to keep refining and moving forward. It is a little extra effort to keep both calendars, it also keeps me highly aware of my time and how I am using it. I believe everyone can master their calendar – taking more control of their life and moving toward the future they want to create.
If you would like more support with these fundamentals and how to generate more business through quality relationships, you can schedule a complimentary Referral Strategy Session with me. Call 925-366-2823 or click here.