Today, we talk about getting out of your comfort zone, how important it is to go out and be face to face, knee to knee with people, especially perspective clients, perspective partners and so on. We talk about networking and how multiplying your network is really powerful in helping your business.
Listen To The Episode Here
Get Out And Start Networking
Today, I want to talk about something that my dad taught me as a kid and one of my early mentors in my career taught me, and I want to pass it on to you today. Early in my life, my dad who was a sales guy would always say it’s vital to get out and go see the people. He would talk about that with his career, why it was important to go out to lunch with people, have dinner with people, go make personal calls on them, not just make phone calls. Of course, this was before social media, before email, before cellphones. My dad always made it clear to me that if you wanted to make progress, you had to get out and see the people. Then, as a young man, as I was building my cellular phone business, the fellow who was about ten years older than me, his name is Jim Tom. He was a great influence on me. He worked for North Pacific Supply Company and they were our distributor for the cellphone business. We would go out and make calls on people and talk about the new products and so on.
I remember we were having lunch one day and we were sitting up on some hillside in the country. We got some hamburgers or something. We just pulled off going between little towns, making calls on prospects. I remember Jim and I were talking about how I was saying, because I was a young married guy with little children, “It’s tough to be away on these trips.” He said, “Aaron, sometimes to make your family number one, you have to put them in second place. You’ve got to go out and you’ve got to be away from the family sometimes, get out into the community, get out and see people in order to provide for your family, to build your business, to do all the things that you really want to do, you’ve got to get out away from them and go off and meet other people. Talk to them, spend time with them, get to know them, build relationships with them.” What we would now be talking about is networking. These were before the days of meet-up groups and so on or networking events, you had cocktail parties.
I learned from an early age how important it was to go out and be face to face, knee to knee with people, especially perspective clients, perspective partners and so on. You jump forward in time and of course, I’m out speaking and doing stuff all the time. I meet people all the time at some of these events. Sometimes, when you get lots of opportunities to go to events, it gets tiring after a while. You’re in airplanes, you’re in hotel rooms and almost every weekend, I’m somewhere giving a talk. Sometimes I’m with my wife or a member of my family who’s able to come along with me but quite often I’m by myself. Sometimes it gets tiring.
I was just recently at an event that I almost didn’t go. As a matter of fact, I turned down opportunities to go to speak at this event multiple times. Even though the event is put on by a friend of mine that I really respect. I’m not going to say her name, even though I would love to promote her event but she makes it very difficult to even get in to get a ticket. She’s very, very careful about who she brings in and you can’t call her and say, “I want to go.” They have to invite you. It’s a terrific event. In a lot of ways, people who attend this event are not people that I see at other events. It’s a great place.
I turned her request for me to come speak down multiple times mostly because I thought instead of getting up on a stage and giving a regular 60 or 90-minute talk, the way she does her events is you have a table with eight or ten chairs around it plus the speaker chair. Every 45 minutes, people move and so you basically have 45 minutes with these people then they get up and they go to a different table and a new group comes to you. I thought, “I don’t know if I want to sit there and tell the same old story seven or eight times during a day. I don’t know if that’s really a good way to present a message.” I just resisted. Finally, I went about four months ago, had a fantastic experience. She typically doesn’t invite people back to back but she did invite me. I was just there early in September, I was invited back. Then, I’ve just been invited to come back a third time in the beginning of November. Very flattering for me, but again, I thought this is a small group and we’re not speaking to small groups and I don’t know how it will go.
The first time I went, I had a great time. I had a canned speech that I was going to do. I was basically talking at them for the most part. This time I thought, “I didn’t like how that turned out.” Even though we had a good response and got new clients and I got invited back and people liked the message, I didn’t like how it felt. I decided this time I’m going to go in and I’m going to talk with them. It’s a small enough group that I can ask questions about the people that are on my table and really tailor the right message to that particular group of five, six, eight, ten people that are sitting at the table. That went great and it was super successful for the specific reason that I was there, which was to get new leads for Laughlin Associates. Here is the thing, there were eleven other speakers who had their own tables. Typically, you wouldn’t get a chance to meet very many of those people but a couple of cool things happened. I’m not going to drop the names. I’m not going to tell you exactly who was there because we have really awesome stuff in progress. What I will tell you is the overview of what happened.
In addition to the wonderful experience I had with the people who came and sat at my table, that were able to have me teach them specific things that they needed to hear about running their business. There was one featured speaker who was up on the stage and they do basically an interview with the host. This is a person that if you’re in the small business community, especially if you’re a woman in that industry or in that community, you’ve probably heard of this woman and her company because they have a very long reach out to women business owners. This is a very accomplished woman that I’ve heard about for years. I knew people that were in her chapters around the country but I’d never heard her speak, I’d never met her.
After this featured speaker, this highly well-known person got done, I went over and introduced myself to her husband. We talked for a minute and I reminded him that we had spoken on the phone once before. The same host had put us on the phone together right after the host had heard me speak at another event and thought we really ought to get together. I walked up, I introduced, “This is Aaron Young.” He said, “Hi, how are you doing? Yeah, we talked on the phone. Let’s visit for a minute.” We started to talk and then he took me over to his wife and introduced me to her and we sat and talked for maybe ten minutes about what their goals are, what our goals are, how we might work together. It was a very warm conversation. There have now been subsequent phone calls and opportunities to speak to their group in a very significant way. That would not have happened if I hadn’t flown clear across the country from Portland to Indianapolis to go do these table talks at a closed event that I couldn’t really promote that I was going to be there. I didn’t know that this woman or her husband were going to be there and be featured but we got together, they knew who I was, I knew who they were. We finally got to face to face, knee to knee, opportunity came up and now, we’re making progress towards finding ways to work together.
Second of all, right after we got done with the day and there was going to be a break and then there was going to be a dinner. One of the other speakers came up to me and said, “I heard your introduction this morning and I wanted to talk to you.” I said, “Funny, I was very excited when I heard who was it being introduced and I want to talk to you but then you’ve been so busy all day. There was never a chance and I didn’t want to interrupt you.” She goes, “Let’s go talk.” I said, “Let’s get out of this room and go down and sit in a restaurant or the bar and visit for 20 minutes or so before the dinner starts.” That conversation went for three hours and just in the last few days morphed into a number of opportunities where we can help each other. Me helping her grow her business, her helping me get greater visibility, which I’m not going to say any more than that but I’ll tell you more as it happens.
Here’s the point. I knew about the featured guest but I had never had an opportunity really to meet her. I had met her husband a couple of years before but that had just drifted out of my mind and clearly out of theirs, but it rekindled very quickly because I was in a room, I was there as a guest, I was there as a speaker, I was knee to knee, face to face with somebody and all of a sudden, a conversation ensued and opportunities presented themselves. Likewise, I didn’t even know this other speaker but I knew the company that she was involved with. I knew the reach that that company had. I hadn’t even thought of myself as a perspective person to be involved with them, but get together, knee to knee, face to face, having some iced tea together and all a sudden, opportunity popped up. It only happens when you’re out in there talking to people. They say the opposite of networking is not working. If you want to learn how to really make a difference, if you want to find opportunities that are not normally in front of you, you’ve got to get out and see the people.
Back to this getting out and seeing the people and getting away from home, away from family, away from your couch, away from your comfy chair and your blankie. I’m talking about getting out and doing something that might even be a little challenging for you. It’s just really true. If your goal is to be comfortable, a lot of people say, “I just feel uncomfortable with that. I don’t know if I would be good at that. That might be awkward. That might be challenging.” If your goal is to be comfortable, chances are you’re never going to get rich. Chances are you’re always going to just be in mediocrity. You’re never going to really achieve your full potential if you’re always just trying to be comfortable. The wealthiest people that I’ve ever met in my life, they are always looking to build their networks. Because when you build a network, you get other people who are your advocates, who introduce you to their clients, who work for you. Whereas most people just work for a dollar, work for a salary, work for an hourly wage.
If you work to build your network and you are respectful of that network and you honor that network and you build great relationships, those people will be the ones that give you the exponential growth. It all starts with you saying, “I’m going to get out of my comfort zone. I’m going to get out of my chair. I’m not just going to send emails. I’m not just going to post on social media, but I’m going to get in the car or on an airplane, I’m going to go somewhere where I can meet people.” Maybe it’s awkward for you to meet people but when you get good at meeting folks and listening to what they need and figuring out how you can help them, invariably if you ask them, “What are you working on? How can I help?” They’ll ask you the same question. I promise you this. There are a ton of people who know you and they might even be able to say the name of your business, but I promise you, your stuff is not top of mind for them.
When you get face to face and you’re standing in a buffet line with somebody or you’re sitting at the bar or you’re up by the pool or you’re sitting next to them and you’re whispering because maybe the talk that’s going on is not interesting you that much. People will get a chance to really know what you do. In those face to face, knee to knee, new friend to new friend or rekindling an old friend, in those moments, that’s when people are going to go, “I didn’t know you did that. I didn’t know that you were able to do that. I’ve got somebody to introduce you to. My clients need that.” When you get out and you network, you always start with that question, “What are you working on and how can I help?” I promise you when you ask that question first, you’re going to get a multiplier effect, maybe even a 10x effect of how other people, when you ask how you can help them first, they’re going to ask you the same question and you’re going to see that come back to you in multiples. Get out of there, get out of your office, get out of your chair, get on an airplane, go somewhere new. Meet some people that scare you, intimidate you, make you nervous and constantly improve the level of your network. Make sure that you’re never the smartest person in the room, that you’re always surrounding yourself with people who make you stretch and you will be blown away by the opportunities that come your way.
That is the message today. That is how you get to become not just the most critical employee in your business, but that’s how you become an unshackled owner. Remember, if you want to learn how to be unshackled, if you want to become one of us, if you get excited by the messages that I share here, my personal messages or the folks that I interview, if you want to learn how you can finally become one of us and become unshackled, you just go and write to me, Aaron@AasonScottYoung.com and say, “I want to set up a time. I want a 15 minutes of visit with you.” See if now is the time to learn the lessons and to get my exact formula so that you can become unshackled. I look forward to seeing you next week right here on The Unshackled Owner podcast. You guys go out there and make it a great day.
Laughlin Associates Magnify Your Wealth Summit is coming to the Dana Resort in San Diego California, November 17th,18th and 19th right there at the beautiful resort at the Mission Bay. We’re going to be bringing you the top experts in asset protection, tax planning and wealth creation. We want you to be there and join us. This is my main event, twice a year I bring together the best people that I know from around the United States to help my people, my clients, my followers to really learn how to build a business, to protect what they’re growing and then to magnify to 10x their value, their wealth and create a life that they can love. I want you to join us for the Magnify Your Wealth Summit, November 17, 18 and 19. When you go to www.GrowIn2017.com and register for the Magnify Your Wealth Summit, make sure you put in promo code VIP2017. That’s special pricing just for our listeners. Make sure that you register now because we only take 100 people and the event sells out every single time. I want to see you there. If you’re ready to grow your business, grow your wealth, protect your assets, protect your family and make sure that you can really become an unshackled owner. I want to see you at the Magnify Your Wealth Summit, November 17, 18 and 19 in San Diego, California.