Sunday, March 11, 2018

What a Difference a Day Makes!

Normally, when we think of networking we think of a business setting.  But really networking is all about developing that oh so important relationship -- in all areas.

This past week I had the experience of having the best and the worst in the medical world  -- and it was all about relationships.

Wednesday, I had my final follow-up appointment  in regard to my cataract surgeries.  I expected a 2 minute appointment with a doctor that I didn't even know, basically to get my eyes measured for a new eyeglass prescription.  When the doc asked how I was doing, I answered, "The cataracts are great, but my dry eyes are horrendous."  I expected him to defer, because of course I was not his patient in regard to that condition.  He surprised the heck out of me by sitting down and spending about 45 minutes (or so it seemed) with me, facing me, making eye contact and giving me information and resources that I had not been given by any other doctor.  He also gave me his card that included his personal cell phone number that he pointed out and said, "Please text me if you have any questions or want me to prescribe the drug that I gave you a sample of."  For those of you in the Toledo area, this gentleman's name is Dr David Bejot.  I would recommend him highly.

Thursday was another story.  I had an appointment with the dry eye specialist at the Kellogg Center at the University of Michigan.  In November I met with this doctor.  He prescribed a treatment where my tear ducts were permanently closed.  I told him that I was willing to do this, but that it was not going to solve the problem, because I had had Puntal Plugs (which do the same thing until they fall out) for years and it helps, but doesn't solve the underlying problem.  He told me to be positive.  Well to make a long story short,  as I had thought, it didn't work.  The reason for my second appointment was to determine what advanced treatments I could get.  I also took my daughter-in-law along and my hubby.  During the appointment, the doctor agreed that more serious treatment was necessary and he suggested the PROSE lens.  Hubby asked, "Will she wear those for the rest of her life?" and the docs said, "Yes, until she can't." 

Well, of course I wanted to know exactly what that meant.  He gave me a another non-answer and
then turned his back to me to work on his computer.  When I asked again to understand what he meant, he lashed out (still with his back to me) and said that he felt like a two year old with my questions.  At that point my daughter-in-law spoke up and said, Dr. ______, "I think you need to adjust the way you are speaking to my m-i-l, because no one speaks to her like that."  I then asked what the first step in the process was.  Again no answer.  Still his back to me.  At this, he stood and said, "Follow me."  What he was doing was taking me to a scheduling desk to make an appointment to see the doctor who actually fits the lens.  BEFORE ALL MY QUESTIONS WERE ADDRESSED.  I would NEVER recommend this man even if he were the last doctor on this earth.

The medical community is pushed to rush patients through appointments by insurance and big medical companies that want more patients per hour.  I totally understand that.  BUT, I challenge each of them to actually see the patient as a person, a real live person. Even if it is only for two minutes. It's all about the relationship, or in Thursday's case -- not!  And for those of you wondering.  At the scheduling desk, the helpful lady said that Dr. _______ had noted that I was to come back in 4 weeks to see him for a follow-up.  My d-i-l stood up for me and said, "No, we would like to choose a different doctor." 

I became aware of a couple helpful tips during my medical journey last week. 

1.  Don't assume that a doctor can't or won't help!
2.  If I am being bullied, I can leave the appointment immediately.
3.  I will always take someone with me to these types of appointments in the future.
4.  I can change doctors just because I want to!
5.  I have a right to be treated with respect my anyone, including those in the medical  community.

After all, if my relationship with the doctor has not garnered a bit of relationship and credibility, then, I won't be assured that this person can help me.

What has been your experience in regard to medical communication?

Saturday, February 03, 2018

Don't Let it Get in Your Way

I had the pleasure this week of celebrating Nation Hijab Day at a panel discussion put on by Women of Toledo.

One panelist, Zobaida Falah, founder of Cure, was asked if she has experienced  discrimination in the business world because of her head covering.  She said that she has, but that instead of being a victim she uses that to motivate her to analyze her presentation or meeting to determine what she could have done better to get a better result.

I thought how that advice can certainly lend itself to the craft of networking.  Sometimes I reach out and are pushed back.  Either people are disinterested or downright rude.  But instead of getting all hot and bothered, I could just move on and ask myself, "Who else would be better for me to connect with?"

Perhaps it is not the people but the process I am using when networking. Am I too forward or not enough?  Am I not reading little signals that tell the world so much and do I need to get better at that?

How can you use Zobaida advice to your advantage?

Sunday, March 26, 2017

It's Just Policy!

One of the best parts of meeting new people is that they always seem to have something to share that is valuable to me.  It is sometimes a name of someone, an event that I might like to go to or even a recipe!  But recently I got a phrase!

I met with Andrea Henning, an attorney here in the Toledo, OH area.  I was chatting about my frustration of people registering for my classes and then bowing out at the last minute.  (I'm sure that never happens to any of you!)  I shared that because of this issue, that I was going to again begin charging people when they sign up (we have a monthly payment plan) so that there is ownership and commitment on their part.  I hate to do it, but I have to!

Andi gave me a phrase that she uses when she lets a prospect know of her up front retainer, She says, "It's not me, it's the policy!" (Andi is a sole practitioner!)  I love it.  She laughs and says, "You'd be surprised of all the policies that I can come up with."

Thanks, Andi.  You helped me so much!

What policies have you invited that I might borrow?

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Networking Makes Work, Work Make Money!

Do you ever sit there and say, "What should I do first?"  I am doing that right now!  I should be.....

1.  Texting my graphic artist with the next dates of the mini classes so he can get busy!
2.  Creating my second list of business friends to invite to our BNI visitor day.
3.  Deciding what to feed the incoming family this weekend and writing up the shopping list.
4.  Getting an appointment scheduled for after the chamber meeting tomorrow.
5.  Writing my month's worth of weekly presentations for November.
6.  Working out.
7.  Communicating with the current CN students.
8.  Calling the members from RRC for the membership committee
9.  Calling new BNI members
10.Recruiting new BOA members

There now that I'm totally overwhelmed, at least I have my list for the day!   But now that it is out of my head I can prioritize and start knocking each one off the list!

Sometimes networking is the same. Where do I start.  I think if you sit down and write down all the thing you are trying to achieve as a result of networking, then you can just start and peg away at your list.  Want to make new connections?  Call or email someone you met at the last event  you attended to see if they will meet you for coffee.

OK, got to go kick my list into gear!

Tuesday, October 04, 2016

Don's October Book Report is all about Trust!

Ever ready with a new book for us to read, Don Kardux's recommendation this month looks like a great read!  And it takes on the topic of trust which is integral to all that we hope to accomplish in CN!

Don shares, "Rob Falke, president of The National Comfort Institute (NCI), based in Cleveland, and my dear friend and client for over twenty-two years recommended that our team read and review this book.
Thanks Rob.
Great choice!

Stephen M.R. Covey is the son of Stephen M. Covey of 'Seven Habits Of Highly Effective People' fame, and the great grandson of Stephen Mack Covey and the father of Stephen Covey.
Do you see a pattern here? I do and it is in patterns.

'The Speed of Trust' reveals patterns of behavior which when discovered and more importantly applied can 'Change Everything'  for the better.

The 'Speed' refers to the truth that when people 'Trust' each other, good outcomes take less time than when there is less trust.

Some believe you have trust or you don't.

Covey says, "We can increase trust - much faster than we might think - and in doing so will have a huge impact, both in the quality of our lives and in the results we are able to achieve."
He divides trust into five waves.

They are: Self, Relationship, Organizational, Market, and Social trust.
Sounds kind of dry doesn't it.

But it isn't.

This book is filled with great experiences.
Some are from the author and many more are pulled from others.
All focus on a visual metaphor introduced on page fifty-seven.
A complete tree has parts that are the four cores of credibility which are essential to trust.
Core 1 - Integrity - Are you Congruent? - The roots.
Core 2- Intent- What's your agenda?- The trunk .
Core 3- Capabilities - Are you Relevant?- The branches.
Core 4- Results - What's your track record? - The fruit produced.

The second wave of trust, Relationship, clarifies thirteen behaviors, which when understood and used can strengthen and even repair broken trust.

A most hopeful  revelation happens on page three hundred. 'Restoring Trust  When It Has Been Lost'.
Stephen writes, "As I said in Chapter 1, the ideas that trust cannot be restored once it is lost is a myth. Though it may be difficult, in most cases, lost trust can be restored - and often even enhanced."
Like his Father and Great Grandfather before him Stephen M.R. Covey presents a practical way to make things better.

If you believe that you or a group you belong to has trust issues, this book can be illuminating and helpful.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Tales from the Networking Word

Not knowing how to network the right way can damage your credibility in the business world.  One aspect that some sales people break ALL the time is not knowing that networking and sales are two different animals.  Each event should be evaluated first to determine the correct behavior.

Several months ago Connext Nation was hosting an early morning event.  We had a huge contingent of grads of our course and they all know how to network the right way.  Then we also had some guests, one who seemed to have a memorized script in his head that came out of his mouth when he opened it! I actually tried to engage him three different times during the time we were together.  He could just not carry on a conversation that took him away from his prepared sales talk.  His last act before he left was to go around to each person and pass out his card (without asking for anyone's in return.)  But that's a whole other topic!

So to make sure that we're all on the same page, at a networking event, the best thing to do is to ask questions to engage other people and begin a friendly relationship that can be elevated in the future.  At a sales type event (like a trade show where you are the exhibitor), again asking questions will give you a lot more information than if you just spout off!  But you can of course talk about what you do for a living in this situation!

Networking 101 is a new course we are offering and it will address topics just like the one above!

Wednesday, September 07, 2016

Are You Coming from Scarcity?

Many years ago now, I asked one of my fellow BNI members to attend some Connext Nation event.  I don’t remember what it was, but it was probably free.  He launched into a verbal attack saying that all I wanted was money from him.  This diatribe went on for what seemed liked eternity, but probably only lasted a few long seconds.  I was so puzzled, because I am not the take it all, leave nothing behind type of sales person.

I mentioned this unfortunate incident to a friend who is much smarter than I and she said, “Debby, he is coming from scarcity.”  I had not heard this terminology before and asked for more explanation from her.  She explained that when people feel that they are not getting enough that fear takes over.  They will lash out inappropriately when pushed beyond a certain line that has been drawn in the sand by their mind.  Hence the attack that seemed to come from nowhere had been brewing for awhile and I was the unknowing trigger.  To say the least I kept my distance from this man at all times in the future.

Scarcity makes us all act in ways that we probably are not proud.  Beyond the lashing out mentioned above, we also tend to hoard or hold on tightly to anything we perceive as our own.  We don’t easily collaborate or give freely of ourselves. Recognizing these actions is important because most of us don’t want to push others out of our lives permanently.  Our emotions want more, but our actions are gaining less.

Years ago, the late Thomas Leonard, was an expert at sharing online coaching and marketing concepts.  He was way ahead of his time when he founded in 1998 and had 100 TeleClasses being delivered in any one week.  I listened to many of his classes and was fortunate enough to even be on some with Thomas “live.”  A participant asked one time, “Aren’t you afraid that people are going to steal your ideas?”  I’ll never forget his reply.  He said, “I hope they do so, because I think you should give away 60% of what you have and know, but charge dearly for the remaining 40%.”  That phrase has been running through my life ever since then.

Scarcity behavior has a way of driving people and money away from you.  Is that the vibe you are putting out and if so, is it what you really want?