• July 9, 2021
Are you networking or not working?

Are you networking or not working?

I often hear, “How do I network now that people may or may not be comfortable gathering and meeting?” Frankly, I believe many people have become lazy about generating introductions to new prospects. Yes, that may be harsh, but it is time to be honest about your past networking efforts and improve them. All too often, salespeople go to networking events without a thought about who they need to engage. Most people’s default is to engage with their friends and acquaintances. Those may be nice or even important conversations, but they can easily become “not working” rather than “networking.” As events begin to return, start fresh now by networking with a strategy, plan, knowledge of the ideal client persona and actionable steps.

Strategy
Determine if your goals are to reacquire past clients, add new clients, expand existing customers or protect your best clients. Be sure to evaluate if that is the best strategy. Many companies are having staffing and supply chain issues and can barely handle existing accounts. If you are in this scenario, adding new accounts may not be your best objective. A better objective may be strengthening your existing relationships enough to soften the impact of service issues by introducing them to valuable resources you do not provide.

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Plan
One plan to follow is to look at which of your best accounts are approaching the average tenure of your account base. That is a good time to make sure you are on solid ground. As you conduct your “Chief Executive Semi-Annual Review” with them, follow the RECON process. Review what you have been delivering. Evaluate how you are performing. Clarify what needs to be changed. Discuss what opportunities there are for you to introduce them to your network as well as future business and introductions for you to their network. Schedule the next step.

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