Yesterday, I had a revealing conversation with a senior businessman. He and his colleagues were looking for a new Business Development Director. They felt cut off from the world and had disbanded their old BD team. Their solution was to bring over a retired client from the ‘dark side,’ so to speak, to use his (and it was going to be his) contacts among his former competitors in as their clients. The logic beggars belief.
I like this businessman. Let’s be clear, as politicians these days like to say. Let’s be clear. He is an amiable man who is organized, hard working and very importantly, fair. He is not a blaming type. He is definitely open to new interpretations of situations from people whom he hadn’t previously realized had a view. He’d adapt easily to a fresher more vibrant team and find a surprising and gratifying second career in a more lively atmosphere.
You have one already. You are just neglecting it.
What an outsider can see, and might dispute, is their belief that they have insufficient contacts with the outside world. True, they may have let their contacts wither on the vine. True, they might have poor procedures for making contacts and looking after them. True, the day-to-day experience in the organization might feel as musty and uncomfortable as a dirty house.
Your market and your home
This analogy will work well. If you feel no one invites you their house, maybe clean your own and invite people around. Maybe clean your house and step into the world with a spring in your step. There is nothing like a cheerful person who looks like they are enjoying life to attract good fortune. (Bring in the Feng Shui for good measure! You aren’t going anywhere very fast right now. You have nothing to lose and they are not very expensive.)
It really is as simple as making your meeting places attractive
Yes, that’s all they have to do. Just clean house. Just go around and ask people – what can we do to make this a comfortable place to meet your clients?
What can we do to make this a comfortable place to meet your clients?
I had a more complicated plan. But writing this helps. This is all that is needed! Just go around the organization and ask: what can we do to make this a comfortable place to meet your clients?