During my latest Founders RAW conversation I was talking with Patrick Henley, founder and CEO of Amp Tab when he mentioned something quite profound.
Connecting with people – truly connecting with someone – is the key to business success.
It was a great moment in the conversation (will post the conversation when it goes live) but I want to riff on the concept of connecting with people and why it can have a huge impact on your success.
Some may view networking as cheesy, uncomfortable and a waste of time. I don’t. And neither did Patrick. Networking is not an activity, it’s an purposeful energy. Patrick says connecting with people has been the difference maker for him and his success in sales and business in general. He pointed to how connecting with someone on a deeper level, figuring out how he could help them in their pursuits tightens the relationship between him and the other person. Once tightened, those people will break down walls to help you.
So how do you really connect with people?
Shaking their hand. Looking them in the eye when they are talking to you. Remembering their name. Making them feel like they are the most important person in that room at that specific moment. Asking what you can do to help them. Asking if you can introduce them to someone they are looking to meet. Following up with them via email the next day to book a meeting or re-confirm what was talked about. These things show the other person you have their best intentions in mind, rather then trying to get something out of them.
Remember, people care more about themselves than others… take advantage of that and let them know you too care about what’s important to them.
All too often people go about their days and nights looking to get something out of others. This is a terrible mistake, just as it is for the guy at the bar who obviously is trying too hard to take any girl home.
Once people feel you have their best intentions in mind, they let their guard down and feel safe to further communicate using all the different means we have available. They will then be willing to add you on LinkedIn, twitter, Facebook and others.
Do that year in and year out and before you know it you have a large network of people who not only feel comfortable with you but would be there when you need a favor (and you know that time will come sooner than you think) and willing to bust down walls to see you succeed.
This is the killer app for founders, creating a network of people you are truly connected with on a deeper level than just a digital click on a social network. If more and more people can hear your name in public and think “man, that person is great and I would do whatever I can to see them succeed” you are golden.
It means you are truly wealthy in the relationships you have built. And since success in business is based on the relationships we have created you will have no other option than to continue on your path towards success.