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BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

It's part sales, part marketing, part branding, part market research and development.

But most of all, it's an art whose masters have made millions.

Join me as we explore this conversation

About Me

 

Raymond Chip Lambert

Raymond Chip Lambert
CEO of Network2Networth, LLC
Business Development Expert

Raymond Chip Lambert is a Business Development expert who works exclusively with seasoned professionals to leverage their existing relationships and catapult them into the business they truly want.

Chip began his career as an analyst and trader for a European Hedge Fund building relationships in the Latin American and European Markets resulting in hundreds of millions of dollars in transactions.

A professional trainer and business coach since 2000, Chip regularly consults professional firms on matters of melding time tested Business Development strategies with online Social Media strategy and unlocking the value of their existing network connections.

He has presented on matters of Business and Network Development to The Arizona Bar Association Solo and Small Practitioner Forum, The Scottsdale Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, the Phoenix Suns, and various trade and professional associations.

A native of Phoenix, Arizona, he admits that he “loves his work a little too much”, but he does find time to travel, sail, and spend quality time with those closest to him.

The Missed Opportunity - The Danger of a Sales Only Mindset

Driving in my car this week, I received a phone call from someone who had me on one of their lists. I didn't recognize the phone number and I was on another call, so I let it go to voicemail and checked it when I was fininshed.

It was a firm out of Kentucky that does business coaching for franchises. I thought, hey, this is a great opportunity for both of us - they do setup and sales and I teach long term business development. So I returned the call almost immediately.

Turns out they were working a conference list for an upcoming event and I was on the list (how - I do not know). He was prospecting me for attending their sales pitch at the event. I told him that I would not be at the event. I proposed, however, that there might be an opportunity for us to refer business back and forth (being the Business Developer that I am).

He shut off. He couldn't even hear me. He was so focused on pre-selling conference attendees that he couldn't hear an opportunity for business that was right in front of him.

He hurridly tried to get me off the phone so he could get to his next call and I obliged him.

As I hung up, it struck me how blind people can be to the opportunities that are in front of them at all times.

I invite those of you who are reading this to consider that there are so many opportunities to create relationships that could send you more business than you could handle, but that you are unprepared to see them.

Take the blinders off.

Get into conversations with people who have a similar client base and see if you can create a win-win relationship with people who deliver value that you do not. It could be the beginning of a business relationship that will transform your operation.

See you next post!

Raymond Chip Lambert
chip@network2networth.com
www.network2networth.com


The Fundamental Misunderstanding

I met with a person from my network yesterday that saw me speak at the Scottsdale Chamber. She is working on launching her management consulting business after a successful engagement with a previous employer.

Obviously she is very good at what she does - or she wouldn't be stepping into the world of small business.

What I shared with her that I share with nearly everyone I sit down with is that there is a fundamental difference between sales and business development.

One of the most important pieces of any business is revenue generation. Pure sales is the most important activity one can engage in - yet most people I talk with are not comfortable with the process. "It's so uncomfortable" is the refrain I hear most often.

While sales may be uncomfortable, there are a few things that you can do to make the likelihood of a sale more emminent:
  1. Be crystal clear about who your perfect client is and is not - Sales people make this mistake all the time. They spend time trying to sell to the wrong people - people without a budget; people who are not decision makers; people who are simply not a prospect. Knowing the characteristics of your perfect client makes your job much easier as you can qualify the people you are talking to. Disqualifying someone is almost as valuable as qualifying them because you don't waste your time.
  2. Figure out where your perfect client comes together on a regular basis and be there - there is an old maxim in business: LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION. Just being where your perfect client comes together can do wonders for your sales results. You not only get exposed to prospects, you also can do some important fact finding: what are the issues that your product or service REALLY solves; what does that solution MEAN to your prospects. When you figure this out, you can get into harmony with your prospects and speak their language - not yours. Try it - it works!
  3. Talk to the clients you already have - It never ceases to amaze me how transaction oriented sales people can be. I learned this the hard way: when you are transaction oriented, you come off like a mercenary. People are wary of mercenaries. Get into relationship with your clients. If you've done a good job for them, they are happy to talk with you about growing your business. Don't wait and hope that they will refer you - educate them about HOW they can refer you.

Business Development on the other hand is a completely different mindset. Not better, not more important - just different.

Sales people miss Business Development opportunities all the time because they are so transaction focused. A caveat here - sales people need to be transaction focused because often they are operating under a quota or goal - I'm not advocating that they stop. What I am advocating is that they begin to develop a parallel mindset of Business Development.

How one approaches Business Development is a bit like the steps above - but with an added eye to creating strategic relationships. Instead of only going for the transaction of the sale, you are looking for introductions to people who could consistently refer to your perfect client. You are also looking for people who could fill holes in your various networks.

Think about this - what would happen if you found three or four key people who could refer you on a consistent basis to your perfect client? What would your business look like if there were no holes in your support system - meaning you could handle more business without dropping the ball? That to me is the beauty of Business Development. It takes a little extra effort and an expanded mindset, but the dividends are remarkable.

Back to the person I was talking with - when we looked, she actually already had people in her network that she could approach to help her grow. I recommended that she book an appointment and ASK for very specific things that would position her to close more business.

I encourage you to do the same.

Now, there is a lot more to this conversation. I'll be writing more on it as we go.

For now, I encourage you to, at the very least, expand your looking zone.

Raymond Chip Lambert
chip@network2networth.com




And We're Off

Welcome to the first post on the Network 2 Networth Blog!

Over the next year I will be sharing practical tips and insights that come directly from my work with professionals as they engage in "Deep Business Development".

I look forward to sharing the journey with you.

There are lots of exciting developments under way and I am excited to reveal them as they unfold.

And - We're Off!

Raymond Chip Lambert
chip@network2networth.com
 
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