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  • Wednesday, September 21, 2022 2:05 PM | Dennis Gonzalez (Administrator)

    As a business professional, you already know that businesses need people, you cannot do this alone. No matter how smart your ideas are, no matter how much wealth you have, you cannot succeed in a bubble. That’s why we network; because we know that people are stronger together and that cultivating solid working relationships is the ultimate key to success. That’s why we need symbiotic relationships. Relationships that bring something to the table that benefit each person. Professional connections we form because aligning ourselves with that person is advantageous for our success. This can be beneficial in a variety of ways. For example, one relationship might be valuable by the contacts it brings in. Another might be beneficial because of the money it can bring to your business.

    So, if you invest in building relationships with a variety of different people, you’ll build a solid network that can bring you varied benefits. Everyone’s networking needs differ, but no matter what your network brings to the table, it can help you get a boost in the business world and motivate others to respect and admire you.

  • Friday, August 19, 2022 1:36 PM | Joe Fox (Administrator)

    We know diversity is important in the workplace and we all want to provide others with equal opportunities. But we don’t always seek diversity when it comes to our closest partnerships. In other words, although we might have friends from a variety of different cultures, ethnicities, and walks of life, we still gravitate towards people who share our preferences and values. It’s human nature, after all; we’re more likely to get along with people who like what we like and we assume that commonality will lead to closeness. But what if we built our professional relationships on the same principles we use to cultivate our circle of friends? Do you think this would lead to a more harmonious company culture or disaster? If you chose the latter option, you’re exactly right! When any network is bereft of diversity, it becomes myopic, close-minded, and flawed. That’s because we need to be pushed beyond our comfort zones. We need to be challenged and motivated by perspectives that are different from our own.

    So, if you want to create a network that’s truly healthy and mutually beneficial, then you need to cultivate diversity. For example, if you’re an older sales executive and you grew up doing things “the old-fashioned way,” you might not be inclined to connect with the hip millennial that runs an up-and-coming vegan cafe. Maybe you worry that the two of you have nothing in common. Maybe you’re uncomfortable with new technology and you’re afraid of looking stupid in front of the new generation. Or maybe you feel as though the chasm between your generations is so great, there’s no hope of closing it enough to find commonalities. This can be especially true if you feel as though your generational business practices are superior or if you’re automatically dismissive of “those darn kids and their technology.” But although they sound divisive, those problems are actually just a list of reasons why you should go talk to them! In this case, both of you have something new and exciting to offer, and you can both benefit from a change in perspective. A simple conversation is a great way to learn new things, make new connections, and develop a healthy network. So, don’t be afraid to reach out to contacts whose values, areas of expertise, or attitudes are different from yours. Instead, be open to new opportunities. You’ll be surprised at what it can do for your network!

  • Wednesday, June 29, 2022 1:34 PM | Dennis Gonzalez (Administrator)

    Are you constantly struggling with your weekly 60-second introduction, use the following outline as a guide to help you be effective.

    60- Second Commercial Outline

    1. Introduction- (Name, Company Name, Profession)

    2. State a Product or Service (break down your business/profession to its critical parts)

    3. Benefits of your business (Success stories, Experience, visual aids, incentives, good vs. bad, etc.)

    4. Ask for a specific referral, the more detailed the more success in referrals

    5. Call to Action (what would you like the members to do to get you a referral)

    6. Repeat your name and company

  • Wednesday, June 29, 2022 1:22 PM | Dennis Gonzalez (Administrator)

    Big mistake people make when starting a referral marketing program is the idea that referrals should be transactional. 

    -“I gave you two referrals I expect two back” approach will never work because we do not offer the same services. An example of this would be comparing one referral sale by a restaurant vs that of a referral for a Realtor. The Restaurant would have a lower value than a sale for a Realtor, which would take much longer. A realtor that tells the restaurant, "I sent you a referral, now you need to send me one" would never be fair. 

    Networking is more like farming then it is hunting. Salesman go out to make a sale, a networker goes out and plant seeds for referrals regardless of how many referrals they provide.

    You must also consider your referral sources. Just because someone refers you does not make them a good business person. Even bad business people will refer you back. To succeed with your referral program long term you must refer for the benefit of your customers first, they will ultimately become your greatest referral source. 

    Remember the benefits to giving referrals without getting them in return

    -Helping someone that’s in need of a service you cannot provide

    -Knowing your client, family, friend, is going to be taken care of by somebody that gives good service. They do not know how to refer but they provide great service

    -Enhancing reputation

    -Building an array of services that people seek you out for (the "I know a guy" guy, which if they come to you for everything, when they are in need for your service they will seek you out as well)

    You can’t just refer anybody, what if they provide bad service? We need to get to know each other through the following:

    -seeing each other often (weekly meetings, one-on-ones, etc)

    -getting testimonials from others

    -Educating yourself about with what your referral partner does

  • Thursday, May 12, 2022 10:16 AM | Dennis Gonzalez (Administrator)

    What do you hope to accomplish from your relationships with your network? Everyone hopes for a mutually beneficial partnership, correct?

    You’re hoping that if you have a problem of some sort, the people in your network can help you solve it by directing you to the right people, resources, or information. And that’s awesome! But as you build your strategic network, it’s important to ask yourself if you’re returning the favor. A network is only successful as long as it’s mutually beneficial, so your list of contacts is going to get pretty short if you’re doing all of the taking and none of the giving. That’s why it’s important to approach every partnership by asking yourself how you can add value to that other person’s life. Because if you really think about it, the people who help others solve their problems are truly the real value!

    Let's visualize this example, 

    Think for a moment about your vehicle. It’s powerful. It’s comfortable. It can easily fit multiple people in it. It can almost take you anywhere you need to go. But eventually, it’s going to run out of juice. On its own, your vehicle can’t do anything about that; it lacks the ability to fuel itself. You, consistently filling it will gas is what causes your vehicle to run. Fuel is a key ingredient your vehicle needs to recharge, succeed, and fulfill its purpose. And when you fuel your vehicle, you and your vehicle become the perfect partnership! What can you do to provide the proper fuel that your network needs in order to perform in the best manner possible.

  • Wednesday, May 04, 2022 10:03 AM | Dennis Gonzalez (Administrator)

    Have you ever played the game “Telephone”? One person whispers a message to the person next to them, that person then has to whisper the exact same message to the next person. The relayed message invariably gets contorted before reaching the last person in the chain. The end result is quite funny, with the final whispered message bearing little resemblance to the original.

    The longer and more complex the starting message, the less chance it has of surviving the trip. This game can be funny, but in real life, when it comes to your business this is no laughing matter. In word-of-mouth marketing, communication is critical; success rests on the delivery and impact of your message.

    Create a message that can be repeated

    1.) Make sure your message shows your passion

    2.) Be memorable, mention benefits more than features

    3.) Make your message authentic and motivational

    4.) Simplify your message. Make it clear and concise and it will arrive intact when it reaches your target market.

  • Thursday, April 28, 2022 1:54 PM | Dennis Gonzalez (Administrator)

    Increasing your approachability

    1. Be ready to engage

    Whenever you attend a meeting, event, party, etc, be prepared for conversations to take place. It is important to have rehearsed conversation topics, questions, stories, etc. in the back of your mind so that you are ready to converse as soon as you meet someone. This will help avoid awkward “how’s the weather?” conversations.

    2. Discover and Focus on CPI (common point of interest)

    Your duty, as you meet new people, is to discover the CPI as soon as possible. This will help establish a bond between you and others. It increases your approachability and allows people to feel more comfortable talking with you.

    3. Give Flavored Answers

    We hear plenty of basic questions in our interactions that go nowhere if not responded with a flavored answer. Questions like “How’s it going?” “What’s Up?” or “How are you?”. Do not fall into the conversation-ending trap of responding “Fine.” Instead offer “Flavored answers” like “Things are going Amazing?” or “Everything is beautiful.” Your conversation partner will instantly change their demeanor, smile and most of the time inquire further to find out what made you answer that way. Why? Because nobody expects it and offering a true response to magnify the way you feel is a perfect way to share yourself and make yourself personally available.  

    4. Don’t cross your arms

    People see crossed arms and they drift away. It’s a simple, subconscious cue that says “Stay away.” It makes you not approachable.

    5. Give options for communication

    People like to communicate with you in different ways; some will like to speak face to face, others over the phone, or via text and email.  Give people as many ways as you can to contact you. Make it easy and pleasant. What matters most is the other person’s comfort and ability to communicate with you effectively.

    6. You’re in control

    Do you ever hear yourself saying, “They won’t say hello to me. They won’t be interested in me”. Don’t let the fear of rejection, inadequacy stop you from achieving your goals. The more you start conversations, the better you will become at it. Be the first to introduce yourself or simply say hello. When you take an active rather than passive role, you put yourself in control and will develop your skills to lower your chance of rejection.

  • Wednesday, April 06, 2022 12:31 PM | Dennis Gonzalez (Administrator)

    What is a business Mixer?

    -It is typically a meet-and-greet event of different business professionals of all professions held by city chambers, businesses, and business associations

    Why should you attend?

    - Gain knowledge and exposure to new trends, products and resources

    -Keep an edge over your competitors with knowledge of the latest technology and trends in your industry with an introduction to new products, equipment and services.

    -Learn about what’s hot, what’s fading and what your company needs to have right now

    -Meet the who’s who of local business professionals

    -Stimulate new ideas and creative ways to support your business

    -Most importantly you are there to build business relationships, meet other business professionals who you can lean on, learn from, and possibly gain business from that you would not have had the chance to meet had not attended. 

    Tips while attending a business Mixer

    1. Have a Purpose

    Before you get to the event, ask yourself, “why am I going?” Come up with two outcomes you hope to get out of the event—say, meeting three new people. Knowing ahead of time what you’re hoping to accomplish will help you stay focused—not aimlessly wandering around.

    2. Bring Business Cards and other Marketing Material

    The goal is not to just to hand out to everyone you see, but have available for those that want the information.

    3. Have your introduction prepared

    4. Focus on others and their needs

    5. Have a list of questions

    Have a few good questions in your back pocket. Asking the other person about their background and work will show that you’re interested in more than just your own job opportunities.

    · How do you like working for your company?

    · What’s your primary role at your company?

    · What projects are you working on right now?

    · How did you get involved in your field?

    6. Take Notes

    You may be meeting quite a few people, try to jot notes down after each conversation to remind you of what was discussed.

    7. Follow Up

    A few days after the event, send follow-up emails to anyone you met that you’d like to continue networking with. Inviting them to join your networking group is a great way to start a consistent networking relationship.

  • Friday, February 25, 2022 12:43 PM | Dennis Gonzalez (Administrator)

    Here are some general rules around building a referral process to keep in mind.

    • 1)     Let it be known.
    • Referrals can be an extremely effective way to grow a business, but clients need be informed that it is something your firm desires. Throughout your interaction with your client, make them aware that your firm builds there business through referral and word-of-mouth, it will give them a way to thank you.
    • 2)     Add Value.
    • Customers will want to refer you if you’ve delighted them. Go above and beyond with your customers to reap the referral rewards. If they have a pleasant experience they will want others to experience the same.
    • 3)     When to Ask. (The Law of Reciprocity).
    • Customers want to exchange with you something of value after you perform a service. If you perform the bare minimum, the payment will suffice there urge to reciprocate. However, if you go above and beyond, a customer will feel the need to do the same, and referrals are a perfect way to show that. The best time to ask for a referral is when they express gratitude for the extra service they received.
    • 4)     Make it easy for them.
    • A lot of times referrals are not made because of the complexity of getting the referral in touch with you. Make it easy; offer various methods to make the connection happen: email, text or phone call and the best times to do so. Let them know they can also send you the referrals information and you will make the contact.
    • 5)     Make it a comfortable transition.
    • Explain to your client how welcoming you will be to their referrals and the special treatment they will receive because they were sent by them. Tell them what their clients can expect when they call and say they were referred, or how you will go about contacting there referrals. If you make your client look good, they will want to send you more referrals.

  • Sunday, February 20, 2022 6:32 PM | Dennis Gonzalez (Administrator)

    TBP got that chance to sit down with former member Denis Nurmela. Denis Nurmela was a member of TBP as a Business Coach and has since moved to China. Mr. Nurmela is an author & freelance writer who has real-world experience in subjects he writes about. As an entrepreneur for over 20 years he has founded companies in both the for-profit and non-profit industries. He has built companies from ground level to multi-million dollar organizations.

    Denis has been an active member of Vistage, the world's largest CEO membership organization. He is sought after as a business consultant, speaker, and is a freelance writer for a variety of business associations.

    In our latest interview with Denis, he provided multiple secrets in the area of Neuro-Linguistics, where you can train your subconscious mind to turn off all the restrictions that hold you back when conducting business interactions, Full Interview below:

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