When it comes to success, you have heard that it is not what you know but who you know that matters. However, what is most important is who knows you.
In the context of business, I do not mean that people who recognize your face and know your name. I mean people who know what you do and like you.
A successful politician said that he could go down the list of registered voters and count over twelve thousand personal friends. It is no wonder that he was successful.
As a professional entrepreneur, it is important to get out and meet people. Let them know who you are and what you do. Get involved. Be helpful. The following are some ideas to help you be involved.
Service clubs are a great way to get to know people while helping others in the process. Lions, Kiwanis, and Rotary are examples of service clubs. They are always looking for members. Just search your city or county and enter the name of a service club. Attend meetings and join if you find yourself having fun.
Business Network International (BNI), might be the best known of the networking clubs. Members meet weekly and formally share leads with each other. Other groups have emerged with the same basic idea. Search your city or county for business networking clubs and see what you find.
Many professionals build their practices from their contacts at church. I am not saying that they only go to church to network and build their practices. I am saying the people get to know who they are and what they do because they attend church and meet people.
What interests you? There might be a meetup for that. Go to Meetup.com and search on your city or county. Look for groups that interest you. If you do not see one you like, consider creating a group. Surround yourself with people you like.
Are you interested in politics? Political organizations are looking for members and people to work. Search for your city or county and the political organization that best represents you. Get involved.
Always have business cards with you and be prepared to answer the question: What do you do? If your answer is specific or unique it is more likely to be memorable. For example, “I specialize in spine and disc treatment with chiropractic care.” Is more likely to be remembered and trigger an action than “I am a chiropractor.”
Make sure people understand what you are saying. Many people will not know what a gastroenterologist does. Instead you could say, “I help people with digestive diseases.”
Ready to grow your business? Have your cards at hand. Know the answer to the question – what do you do? Get out there and meet people. Your business will grow. You will have fun. You will help people.