Monday, July 18, 2011

Getting What You Want

Recently someone asked me, "But how do I find a person who will refer to me on a regular basis?"

I wish I could say, "You just need to kiss the frog and like magic, referrals start hopping your way," but I'd be sugar-coating a process that is long term, both in results and in development.

One way to catch the attention of someone who might be the best source of referrals is to give that person a qualified referral first. You ask, "But how do I do that if I don't really know what they need?"

Take a step back and get to know them better over coffee, lunch, breakfast or drinks. Or all four! If you don't know them well enough to refer them, then guess what? Probably it's comin' right back at ya'.

Once the relationship has evolved to this more seasoned level, then you can begin to listen (or hopefully you've listened all along) for opportunities. It may not be just in the person's business life, but also in their personal life.

One book that I'm recommending that really helped me to open my referral ears is, Money on the Table, Referrals in the Bank by Lee Abraham. It will change the way you listen and will offer you the opportunity to give more qualified referrals. And of course, you can teach these techniques to the very people you want referrals from!

What's your experience with developing these referral sources?