I attended the LSSO 10th anniversary Raindance conference today in Boston. What a super day… top level people from all over the country came together to learn, collaborate and enjoy a wide range of topics. I found myself jotting down notes and quotes all day, each one better than the next. Here are a few of my favorite quotes from today’s presenters:
- “If you don’t ask, you don’t get”– this one refers to a tried and true fundamental in the sales process…. asking for the work! If you don’t come right out and ask for the work, you won’t ever receive it.
- “Change happens”– this one was married to an other favorite concept from today. You can either affect change, or be effected by change. It’s all in how you approach each opportunity!
- “Your clients include every single person you deal with”– so true in any organization. Treat everyone with the respect they deserve, and you will be successful supplying superb service.
- “No service = No relationships”– along the same thread, relationships are a great result of exquisite customer service.
- “Emotional IQ is super important”– exude appropriate levels of self confidence and be pleasant to be around. Being smart isn’t enough to get you the work. Showing your humanity will always help you get work!
I hope you like these! I will share more as I digest my notes further over the coming days! Enjoy!
I was reminded of a very important, very underutilized tool this weekend… practice! Sure… the tool seems so simple, but it is so often overlooked. It became very clear to me in a recent encounter with my teenage son. He and some buddies made a golf date and needed to set up a tee time. So, he looked up the golf course and gave them a call. Then the most interesting thing happened. The person on the other end of the line picked up and my son’s mind went blank. He had a struggle getting his thoughts lined up to ask the questions he needed answers to. It all worked out and the other person figured out what he wanted and they booked their time together with that person’s help, but it was a little difficult to listen to! When he got off the phone, I asked him what happened. He told me his mind just went blank and he couldn’t get the words out straight. Can happen to anyone, right? It’s true. Any circumstance, any time. We talked about it and he told me that had he taken a second to think through what he needed to know, he could have formulated his thoughts ahead of time, resulting in an easier conversation. I would venture one more step… perhaps even speak through the questions out loud first, a ‘practice run’ of sorts.
So, what does this have to do with business development? A lot. Business development conversations can be difficult to begin with. Why not make them easier on yourself with a little pre-planning? Try this tip… before dialing the phone or seeing someone in person, ask yourself the following three questions:
- What do I want to learn from this conversation?
- How will I ask for the information?
- What follow-up questions may I have?
Next, study the answers and develop your message to the person on the receiving end. Your not quite done… practice delivering the message(s) you develop from the answers to those questions before making that call. This practice helps you have much smoother conversations. It will also help you gather the answers you need to make subsequent decisions. Build this into a habit and you will be a much more effective communicator in the long run. Practice really makes the difference!
I couldn’t begin to tell you what it means to me to have been recognized at the “Your Honor Awards” ceremony in Boston last week. My beloved trade association, the Legal Marketing Association’s New England Chapter, has always been a huge part of my professional life. I first joined in 1998 as a means to learn as much as possible about the industry I had just become a part of. The educational component of LMA is a great asset. Something that I have come to know intimately as I serve my third consecutive term as the programming chair.
But even more than the content I have encountered over the years, I find my connection to the LMANE membership has reached a much deeper level in the past 5 years or so. I developed excellent friendships and business relationships. People who know this industry and what it means to help others do what they fear most, sell their services. There is a kinship that comes along with tackling a difficult job that connects you deeply. This is why the LMA has always been important to me. My experience in this group has made me a firm believer in giving more than you take in order to be successful.
All I can say is thank you. Thank you for giving me more than public recognition. Thank you for helping me build my knowledge, network and friendships. I am incredibly honored and humbled to have been named an LMA New England Chapter Star for service to this chapter. I encourage everyone to find their ‘LMA’ and enjoy the experience!