Speed networking for service professionals is as much fun as brain cancer
- highly technically skilled analytic type about attending such events
Let’s face it. It’s not that you hate such exercises; it’s that you hate how lousy you are at them.
You’ve heard all this talk about building relationships (and I am an international expert on that subject). But let’s face it. You’ve never been good at that. Just ask your spouse or even your kids who think you’re incredibly smart. Period. End of compliments from them.
I hate to say it, but building business is secondarily about building relationships. What it’s about is getting the chance to demonstrate some incredible service professional skill, talent or capability and solving an Important, Critical and/or Urgent problem (what we call taking it to the ICU) in some effective and efficient way that your client and you know they never would have come up with in a million years. After you’ve demonstrated such amazing value, they might want to develop a relationship with you.
So let’s make this as painless as possible and cut to the chase that it’s all about getting and closing new business. Right?
And so, when it’s service professional speed networking time, be prepared to ask and answer these questions:
- Hi, I’m ______, what’s your name?
- I work for _________ which does __________ and what I do there is ______________.
- What’s your company and what does it do?
- What do you do there?
- Who hires you?
- What do they hire you for?
- When do they hire you?
- What do you get done for them?
- Why do they hire YOU and not one of your competitors?
- Tell me a story of a problem you solved for someone, using a counter intuitive solution, and the “breakthrough” result so I can get a taste of how you do what you do and what difference it makes.
Isn’t this fun?
Seriously, take the above to your partners, associates and anyone else who is trying to do biz dev and modify it to fit what makes sense.