How to Review Your Referral Partners

When to move on in a referral relationship is a question that comes up often and I thought today was a good day to chat about it. In the past week alone I have had 3 clients make the decision to ‘move on’ from a potential partner or new relationship without really giving it a fair chance. I have hopefully talked them out of moving on, but want to open up this conversation with my ‘tribe’ on Linked In. Let’s start with why you would fire a referral partner: ·        Misrepresentation of their capabilities to deliver. There is no fake it til you make it with referral relationships. Your partners put their reputation at stake, it’s a risk that shouldn’t be rewarded with you practicing with a new marketpotentially at their expense. If you are taking a proven concept to a similar client that you have multitudes of experience with, that’s a different story. Be clear on what you can do and make sure you are overdelivering and underpromising with all introductions, otherwise, expect to get a pink slip from your partners. ·        Making bad introductions. Referral relationships invest their valuable time with you educating you on who they serve, what a good client looks like and even more importantly who’s not a fit. Time is precious and if you make introductions to ‘spiders’ and waste your partner’s time you deserve to go back to cold calling. ·        Bad Behavior. Sometimes people behave badly and you can’t afford to have your reputation tied to someone who doesn’t have the ethical standards to represent you or your brand, which is at stake with every...
Is Monogamy Overrated?

Is Monogamy Overrated?

With referral partners? Made you look, didn’t I? This topic of conversation has arisen this week even more than it usually does, which inspired me to write this post.  We cultivate relationships with referral partners hoping to gain those quality introductions, not be one of 3 on a list that is emailed over with no added insight from referrer. Introductions are something many struggle with to obtain from referral partners.  It makes the difference between a 10% chance of getting the deal to a nearly 90% with a highly influential referrer.  We often run with ‘you can use my name when you call’ permission from the referrer just because we don’t want to push our luck. What does this have to do with monogamy? The question is, should you only have one referral partner in a given profession?  Is it cheating to have more than one? Let’s consider a few factors…. When an introduction is made, risk is taken by the referrer opening a door to a valuable relationship that could be lost if you screw up.  I think just about anyone who has been in business for a significant time has been present and accounted for at a train wreck and I know of a few that have even caused the death of a few companies.  Much is at stake. Trust is key.  Which necessitates open doors of communication with referral partners about exactly who is, and who is not, a great referral.   When I ask ‘who is a great client for you?’ and the response is ‘anyone who has a business, job, pulse, etc’ I am immediately...
A Tale of 2 Meetings

A Tale of 2 Meetings

Someone asked my husband once what I did for a living and he responded with – she drinks a lot of iced tea and hangs out in coffee shops meeting people.    Doesn’t that sound like my job isn’t work? I am one of those coaches who believe you must practice what you teach to have credibility with your audience.  And also, this stuff really works.  This blog is a little about the day in the life of a SalezWORKS coach. We work with a large segment of clients in the financial services arena.  One of the foundations of our process is to be able to offer a comprehensive solution to our clients for their growth challenges, which means we spend our time looking for coaches and resources our clients might be in need of on their path to success.   We have a financial service advisor we are partnering with who referred us to 2 resources he has worked with successfully.  Our blog is the result of those 2 meetings and to share with you characteristics we have found are present in great partners for us.  And probably they’ll be present in your great partners.  And even more importantly – how do you recognize a partnership that will be a one way street not heading your way… Meeting #1 – Highly successful career exec who has been in a leadership role in a fast growing company about a year.  He’s known as a problem solver, innovative thinker and all around good guy.  Scene – Coffee shop in the a.m., he arrived 15 minutes early, Joyce and I were right on...
Referrals on Autopilot?

Referrals on Autopilot?

Wouldn’t it be great if you had a relationships with someone that just sent you business consistently day in and day out without any investment of time on your part? I see a lot of people fall down with expecting people to be thinking of them without doing anything remain top of mind with their center of influence relationships. I have the fun of working with people in a lot of different industries and one of my clients, Marc, is a sales genius who happens to broker airplanes. Our conversation this morning was about what autopilot really does in an actual airplane with wings, an engine, with a propeller-+ that flies. I was thinking autopilot was like cruise control you would set and then pop open the latest best seller, be able to run below and make yourself a cocktail, take a nap or enjoy the in-flight movie. Of course, that is not the case. I learned there are aircraft in which you have an autopilot that merely maintains level wings and altitude, in other words, it simply goes straight at that same speed. Then there are some aircraft in which you can set the system to basically run your flight from takeoff from once you get it in the air until you are ready to land. The difference is, of course, dependent on aircraft model, features and how much you are willing to spend (since that plays a role in how many bells and whistles you get). But bottom line, there are still systems that if you walk away from the controls, you will fly into the side of...
The Single Greatest Referral Partner Meeting Tip

The Single Greatest Referral Partner Meeting Tip

Little things mean a lot, and often it’s the little habits top producers consistently practice that lead to their success. They don’t let things drop. They’re better at follow up than we are. They can afford to hire an assistant and you are stuck doing your own admin. Blah, blah, blah. All good reasons but I thought I would share with you one of the success traits I see that differentiates successful prospectors from the rest of the world who has meetings, but never seems to accomplish anything. So what do they do? They get a next step. An outcome. A conversation with a mutually agreed up on agenda. They don’t live in the world of assumptions. They don’t add time into their schedule when they have their calendars with them, they know how much longer it takes to get something done if you have to rely on email communication – back and forth, does this date work, no, how about the week following… and before you know it – you’re ‘out of the notion’ as my Grandmother used to say. And what could have been a great relationship goes by the wayside. There’s my rant for the day – now what you do with it is up to you. Will you determine together if there is a next step? Discuss what it looks like? Book the meeting? Invite other attendees who would benefit from the relationship? Make it happen… It’s all you! Ready to take action but not sure what to do next? Join us for the 9 Steps to Productive Prospecting webinar or live event. Contact us...