I talk to many business people, both acquaintances and long term friends, during the course of my work day. Over the past few weeks, it's become apparent that so many incredible business people miss the mark in what a relationship really means, at least in conjunction with their desire for business growth and continued success.
Simply put, you must go all in. You must. It's not easy, but it can be a (somewhat) simple process.
Years ago, as many of you know, I was in a number of bands. Over the course of time, you discover one constant in every band you are in: It's that you're married, in a sense, to the other band members. You are tasked to be an artist and to find a happy medium to work together. You also must work hard to satisfy the needs and desires of each individual musician. No WONDER most bands fail! You are stuck in a pseudo "multi partner" relationship, and as we know it's hard to be married to ONE person, let alone 4 others.
This thinking lead me to understand a key aspect of successful business networking. Without going all in, and being (so to speak) in a business marriage with a select FEW, your business will never find the support it needs, nor will theirs. You will continue to stumble around, kissing frogs all day and wondering when you'll "get yours."
So, it's simple. Go all in. Here's how:
Pick the top 5 (maybe top 10) business people you desire to work side by side with, and offer to give them as much focus as you can. Be their eyes, ears, and feet on the ground. Be their confidante, their support, and their eye on the prize. You are charged with entering into a true relationship. Without that level of commitment, congratulations.... you're just like everyone else struggling to get along, and wondering why things haven't quite "worked out for you."
If someone were to ask you about your favorite Japanese restaurant, without hesitation you'll drop the name of the place that absolutely floored you, correct? You have to think about your chosen partners the same way. You CANNOT be in a conversation with a stranger, hear the magic words, and take the time to think about how you can serve them first, or what's in it for you. You must transition to your partners.
They must do the same. They MUST.
Without a level of mutual commitment, you are a one handed clap, and you're missing.
So, take these words to heart. Chew on who is right for you. Who fits your Modus Operandi? Find them, commit fully, and reap the benefits. Until then, you are going to continue to look for articles just like this and wonder why nothing is working out for you.