This past weekend I watched a show about Snipers on the History Channel and thought about how much we can all learn about business, and referrals, from these highly skilled individuals.
This will be a multi-part blog as there are a few key things I would like to focus on when it comes to referrals and word-of-mouth marketing.
The first thing that really stood out to me was a comment that a Sniper Trainer made when discussing a fellow sniper and an extremely difficult mission that person was in. The comment, which I have researched is a common one used by the military and it goes…Prior Proper Preparation Prevents Piss Poor Performance.
This is so simple, yet so true. The reason this sniper was successful against all odds in this mission was due to the amount of training, planning, and preparation that he had done prior to going into the mission. It wasn’t by chance that he brought the exact weapon needed, or luck that he was able to hit 16 targets in 30 seconds. His survival was due to the fact that he spent countless hours preparing himself to be able to handle that situation.
Unfortunately too many business owners and professionals lack this ability in their business, and even more when it comes to networking. Too many people go into a networking event, or meeting, with no prior planning or goals.
It is vital to our success in networking to invest the time planning for it. We need to take a lesson from the military, and these snipers, and invest time planning our “mission.” Who do we want to meet? What professions should we be targeting to network with? Exactly what referrals are we looking for? What is the style of networking of the organization or event and how do we utilize it?
If we want a flow of high quality referrals coming into our business it is important that we don’t just go out “networking” with no plan or thought. I speak with hundreds of business owners a week who complain that networking doesn’t work, or networking isn’t for them, or even networking is a “fad.” However, when you ask some simple questions about goals, plans, etc, you realize that they feel that way because the networking they have done has created Piss Poor Performance.
Remember, word-of-mouth marketing should be a part of your business plan, but like any other part you need to focus time and energy on it to make sure that it produces the results you desire… i.e. High Quality Referrals! In order to produce the results you need to prepare! I ask you have you been following this mantra?
Prior Proper Preparation Prevents Piss Poor Performance
Please leave a comment and tell us what type of planning you do before you go to a networking event!