A big obstacle to ongoing business development is networking with purpose. Here are a few ideas that may help you and your team focus on business development as a positive part of your life, not a chore.
Set goals: What are your objectives when you go to an event or a meeting or interact with clients? It should be more than passing out your business card. Plan to meet 2 people, ask 2 people about their work, learn more about 2 people’s hobbies. Meet, ask, learn, and listen.
Make a difference: Rather than passive networking events, be strategic about how and where you spend your time. Get involved with organizations that you believe in – share your expertise with your community, offer valuable advice to a charity or join a service organization that shares your values. You can help others and grow your network.
Stay in touch: Deepening relationships with acquaintances and clients is more valuable than meeting new potential clients. Just as in other service industries, excellent customer service counts. Make a phone call, send a note or email, whichever you prefer…get connected, stay connected.