Last week at our S.E.V.E.N. meetings we talked about having a great heart-2-heart (also known as a one on one) with another business owner. This is one of the most important things you can do to get to know the other members of your networking groups.
People do business with those that they know, like and trust. I often hear people say that they don’t get referrals from the group. My first question to them is “How well do you know the others in the group? Have you sat down with others to do heart-2-hearts?’ Most often the answer is, “No.”
One thing a lot of people forget – networking is not about you. It is always about the other person and how you can help them. It’s not enough to just show up at meetings- networking happens before the meetings and after. Networking is about building relationships.
THINGS YOU SHOULD DO AT A HEART-2-HEART
Here are a few things you might talk about during a heart-2-heart:
- Goals- What do you want to accomplish in your business? What are the problems that you want to solve in your business?
- Interests- What things do you really enjoy? Hobbies, passions, recreational activities, etc.
- Skills- What do you do extremely well? What are some areas in your business where you excel? Or maybe you are great at social media or technology. Share this with your contacts and see how you can help them.
- Other Networking Events– Most networkers are part of other great networking groups. Find out about these other options so that you can broaden your circles and meet others as well!
- Family – Most people love to talk about their families. You may find you have more in common than you know. Kids that play the same sports, grandchildren, friends, etc.
- Where do they come from? What unique experiences did they have growing up?
Remember to use active listening skills. Make eye contact and really absorb what the other person is telling you. Be prepared to share about yourself as well. Remember, this is a conversation where both people talk.
THINGS YOU SHOULDN’T DO AT A HEART-2-HEART
A heart-2-heart is a way to get to know someone better and for them to get to know you better as well. It is NOT a place to spam your business.
Avoid doing the following:
- Don’t show up with your “presentation” or a ton of literature. You will only overwhelm the other person. There is a good chance that you will not end up doing business with them.
- Don’t try to sign them up or ask them to join your team. Why would you ask someone to join your team when you don’t know them yet? Why would THEY want to join YOU when they know nothing about you?
- Don’t monopolize the conversation by talking only about your business. If you are meeting for half an hour, then split the time equally so that both parties have time to share about themselves. Set a timer and agree to one person speaking for 15 minutes and then the other person will go next.
- Do NOT speak poorly about another person’s business at a heart-2-heart. You will only be doing a huge disservice to yourself.
Yes, we ultimately network to grow our business but this takes time and is a process. To get referrals from networking friends you need to ensure that your contacts have all of the necessary information about you and your skills. They need to know you as a person first. It is amazing how many people fail to recognize this. The most important thing to do at a heart-2-heart is to be authentic.