Joint us at our August meeting for a Moderated Discussion
Remember the lyrics to the old song standard Summertime? It goes, “Summertime and the livin’ is easy.” Not if you’re a business owner! The kids are home from school, you’re trying to squeeze in some vacation time and oh, by the way, you’ve still got a business to run. Having optimal work-life balance is a challenge for business owners every day - not just in the summer - but we often feel the heat even more during this time of year.
In our August meeting, Program Committee co-chairs Kim Carter and Terry Welford will moderate a discussion on work-life balance. We’ll explore best practices in areas such as time management, productivity and stress management. Bring your challenges as well as your ideas. You’ll leave with at least one new strategy for achieving better work-life balance.
By Deb Oliver: The Women’s Business Forum was treated to an energetic and insightful presentation by Francine Graglia, a small business advisor and advocate against “slimy” selling. She has trained intensively with New York Times bestselling author Michael Port and has mastered the proven Book Yourself Solid marketing system. She has earned the status of Elite level and presently helps train Michael’s mentees.
Francine doesn’t believe that mere marketing will get your business; it just gets you awareness. She thinks the right kind of marketing in the right place at the right time is the answer. In a target market, “people take notice and want to check you out, see what you stand for, why you do what you do and if your foundation is good.” She says if your price and circumstances suit them you have an opportunity to earn their trust and book the business.
Francine thinks there are two self-promotion strategies: Networking and Direct Outreach. In Networking she recommends creating a network of 90 and taking 15 minutes a morning to share everyday what and who we know and how we feel. She further suggests: introducing two people in your network every day; sharing knowledge to three people via articles that pertain to their interests; and sharing compassion to one by reaching out in a personal manner. These are the ways to build relationships that will give back to you in perpetuity and form a foundation for continued success.
Through Direct Outreach Francine recommends making a list of 20 people you need to know in related professions that will help you in your business. Look for the synergy to your business i.e. caterers might need to know meeting planners. She says, “Go to the first person on the list and reach out whether through an exchange of ideas” or recommending to them opportunities you feel might work with their business. She gave an example of an author who read books relevant to his market and after making these acquaintanceships would personally send copies to them thus establishing a personal relationship that engendered loyalty.
Once that relationship is established Francine suggests moving that person to your list of 90 and continuing through the list of 20 in the same manner. Through this process you have introduced yourself to 20 unknown people, have established relationships that are now part of your 90 and expanded your network of personal connections in a manner that is both professional and personal, genuine and has the potential to reap the financial rewards you wish for you business.
Networking: What's in it for YOU?
We all believe networking is important to grow our businesses. But how do you network the right way to get what you need from the organizations you are involved with? Here are just a few tips to help you get the most from your networking:
1) Show up: this is critical, however it's just the beginning!
2) Ask questions. Learn how you can help others, why they are there and who they want to meet.
3) Connect. Introduce people that may be able to help one another.
4) Be generous. Share what you know in a non-promotional way; you will be remembered for your expertise.
5) Get involved and take action! Learn where your expertise can best benefit the organization and its members and become a champion.
6) Persevere. Building your network must be based on trust and relationships - this takes time!
When you become known for showing up, serving others and taking action, you'll become become the "go to" person in your network when someone needs the services you offer.
What can I, and the Women's Business Forum, do to support you? We really want to know, so please share!