Blogs I Read on a Regular Basis

Here are some blogs that I read on a regular basis. Enjoy!

ProBlogger, Darren Rowse – Taking the 31 day challenge to a better blog. This one is homework!

BNI New Zealand – Great advice from down under. Networking is the same all over the world.

John Lusher, a Twitter geek who talks about social networking.

Jerry W. Williamson, Ambassador of Networking. Really nice stuff from Alabama.

Hazel Walker, The Networking Strategist – Read the Queen’s work!

Dr. Ivan Misner, The Networking Entrepreneur – Hear from the absolute expert!

5 Easy Ways to Find a Substitute

In BNI we have an attendance policy – miss more than 3 meetings in a 6 month period and your category can be opened up. Visitors join in spite of the attendance policy, members stay because of it. Here are 5 ways to find someone to sub for you at your next meeting:

  1. Your business partner or colleague. Are you a realtor? Surely there’s another realtor in your office who owes you one. Business partners make great subs because they truly understand your business.
  2. Vendors. Take a look at your checkbook and see where the money goes. Assuming the position is still open in your chapter, ask your website designer, printer, business coach. All of these people have an interest in keeping your business, and in grown their own business. This is also a nice gift to your chapter because they are also a potential member.
  3. Your Adult Child. Yes, your son or daughter can be a great substitute for you. One woman I know has raised her children in the BNI frame of mind, and they often bring referrals for the members of the chapter because they have subbed for their mom and have met everyone. 18 year olds buy things and recommend services too!
  4. Your customer, especially business owners. Just like #2, this is a potential member to the chapter. And who will say nicer things about you than a satisfied customer! Most of my customers already call me when they need a referral to someone, as they know I am well connected. This way they often meet people they have already done business with through me!
  5. The same person you call to watch your dog, take you to the airport, or other such favors. While they might not be a good fit to become a member of BNI, they are a present to your chapter. Did you know that each visitor to a BNI chapter, even if they never join, is worth, on average, $1000 in closed business?

So remember that a substitute can be fairly easy to find, all you have to do is know where to look! They are right there, waiting to pay you back for all the things you have done for them. And they’ll thank you!

What’s Your Response Time?

As my grandmother used to say, I am getting behinder and behinder. Last week was crazy, and this week is proving to be the same, maybe even more so.  So many people asking for so many things, in so many different ways.

Technology, and specific to my week, Social networking sites, are overwhelming me. What is the expected response time to voice mail, email, LinkedIn mail, FB posts, and heaven help us…Twitter? I even read a blog last week by someone who told his clients – in his blog – that if they want to talk to him leaving him a voice mail was not the way to contact him. They should text him. Hmmm…wonder how that’s working out?

I am of the current opinion – sure to be changing – that you need to communicate with the other person in the way that they want to be communicated with. That means calling my auntie, who is not on anything online, but does have voice mail. Email is the best way to speak to my brother and most of my clients, while some of my friends are most easily reached via facebook, of all things.

What do you think? What kind of turnaround do you expect for voice mail & email especially, but also for emails on sites and what about texting? I really want to know!

Would You Hire This Person?

I just ran across a post on LinkedIn that read “i am looking to expand my network. i am going to accept all invitations.” The person who posted it has a title of “Administrative Supporter”.

So what’s wrong with that? Let’s leave the whole “connect with anyone and everyone” conversation for another day. My point on this one is the punctuation and grammar. Sentences start with a capital letter. The word “I” is always capitalized. She made two mistakes in one letter. Not once, but twice.

What is an “Administrative Supporter”? Now I’m starting to think that English is not her first language. So now you’re thinking, cut her some slack. But I can’t do that. This is her online image. She is looking for more business or she wouldn’t be online, trying to connect with anyone who will do it. It makes me physically cringe.

The third challenge is her use of passive voice. I used to speak and write that way, but once it was pointed out to me it is now one of my pet peeves. She’s “going to” do something? Or she’s doing it?

As my friend Bob Nichols points out in his book, Remember The Ice, there is power in your articulation. Ask a friend, hire a writer, do something to make sure you are delivering the message you want to convey. You never know how many customers you lose, how many opportunities pass you by, with poor use of the written language. You know who you are…fix it! Remember, You Are Always Doing A Commercial!

Let me know what you think…click the Comments button below!

Not Hip Enough for this Hotel

Spent the weekend in Chicago with a friend of mine and stayed at the W Hotel on Lakeshore Drive. We decided we are just not hip enough to stay at such a hotel. The fixtures, the decorating, the music, the entire vibe of the hotel is one of hip, happening, beautiful people and it’s not us.

They answer their phone “W Hotel, What is your wish?”. We thought free rooms might make a nice wish, but figured that was one that would stump the staff so kept it to ourselves!

It makes me wonder, am I not hip enough for my clients? Am I making sure that what I am doing is current, forward looking, yet still has enough business savvy in it to make me someone to hire? What about you?

p.s. two weeks later: My friend who I went to Chicago with called me after leaving the Apple Store to tell me that he found another place we’re not hip enough to go into. But since he’s an Apple guy and I have an iPhone, I guess we’ll just suffer through it!

Stop Running a Sloppy Business

This is from Elizabeth Fischer, Profitable Marketing Insight. Read her. This is great stuff.  She called it Marketing Differently. I call it Stop Running a Sloppy Business

Get Chirpy People Help

Having depression and other mental illnesses run in my family, this video hits very close to home. We laughed until we cried. I hope you find it as funny as I did.

Click to see video of the new Depression drug (it’s from the Onion, it’s irony people)