Tim Sinclair is the Industry Consulting Director at the accounting firm WebsterRogers, and he has worked with more than 350 companies across the U.S. and in a variety of industries. He is passionate about helping business leaders advance and grow their companies so they can, in turn, improve the lives of their employees and their local economy.
We discuss the skills you need to develop a business, how he helps the team at WebsterRogers sharpen their business development skills, and the role improvisation plays in this process.
Business Development 101
- You need to know what makes you unique and different, and why someone should do business with you – and you need to be able to succinctly articulate that to a prospect or client.
- Active listening is a critical skill; be engaged in a conversation and curious so that you can understand what another person struggles with, what their needs are, and how you can help.
- Consider the whole experience of each meeting, and make it a unique and memorable experience. Bring an item related to their business, a gift, or something else that makes it stand out.
- Change your mindset around networking. “You’re not out selling – you’re out helping.” You need to have enough confidence in your service and what you provide so that, when you network, you see a bunch of people who need help, and you know you’re able to help them.
- Your relationships will differentiate you from technology, which will be increasingly important every year. Plus, when you develop business relationships, the likelihood of losing business diminishes dramatically.
- You should also build relationships with other people in your industry! More often than not, you’re helping each other succeed more instead of competing with each other for the same money.
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