Jeb advises what to do when you are blocked by a Good ol' Boy network.
Never Eat Alone: you must actively work to build relationships and your reputation. Just like in anything you do in sales, activity is everything. Who can you take to lunch or dinner? What conferences can you attend? What events can you volunteer for? Consider giving a presentation at your next Trade Association conference or Rotary meeting. Write articles for your trade publications. Or even sponsor a charity event. The name of the game is to become known and to open up as many opportunities as possible to build relationships with people in the inner circle. This takes hard work, a commitment of time and energy, and drive to take every opportunity to connect with others.
Value First: the problem most people have is that they are almost always thinking about what they want rather than the wants and needs of other people. This is the very reason so many people fail when faced with a Good o’l Boy network. Instead of seeking ways to add value to the lives of the people in the network first, they ask for, talk about, and focus on what they want. And the door is slammed in their face every time. The secret to getting on the inside is to get people to like. This will only happen when you adopt a value first attitude. Stop talking about yourself and your product. Ask questions. Listen. Uncover the problems of others. Then get creative and solve these problems – even if it has no direct connection to your product or service. What you will find, is people are extremely loyal to people who solve problems and the more value you give, the more others will want to give back to you. And it is this reciprocity that will eventually open the door and invite you in.
This is Jeb Blount, the Sales Guy. Thank you for listening. Word of mouth is how we grow.
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