Have you ever struggled to expand your business? How to grow you social media influence? How to have a greater impact with your ministry? Maybe you just want to know how to be more valuable in what you do?
Many have either employed me or reached out to me in some way to help them to build their influence or impact over the years because they have seen either my work at a Big 4 or they have watched my own success in my endeavors with a nonprofit, still others wonder how I grew a part time business to making $10,000 a month in sales (which may not be a lot to many but I’d say I’ve seen some success in that business). Some have been authors that wanted to get a book picked up by a publisher, some wanted to start their own business, some were business owners that have wanted to stand out and still others are those who have been stepping out for the first time to accomplish their dreams.
Today I want to share with you what I have shared with many of them. And what I am about to share with you may possibly change your life if you put it into practice.
I cannot tell you that I am the expert to all experts to everyone out there but I can tell you what I have learned along the way in going after my own dreams and goals and what I have learned from working with experts. I am in a state of constant learning and I think that is probably my major asset, because I can always share something new that I have learned that has brought me farther along in my life. Today I felt like I wanted to give you one major key to the success in my own life and that I have been able to give to others. Something that will take you from struggling with no influence to being able to accomplish whatever you set out to do.
I am going to talk to you today about bringing value. When so many think of the word “Marketing” they think of commercials and advertisements but when we do this we completely miss what true marketing really is. Some I have found in the nonprofit world have seen “marketing” as a bad word for this reason, because they don’t want to “sell” but at the foundation of what they do and what they stand for “marketing” should be what they build upon...let me explain.
Many of you that have followed me over the years know that even though I might have not been “the expert” in the field I somehow managed to grow an internet radio show to a listener base of 70,000 listeners around the world. I remember when I did this many people I had on my show would ask me how this was possible. They knew I had not established a brand of being the one that knows it all and many would stand back and be baffled by it. They knew I wasn’t the one on television with this huge speaking itinerary yet I had all of these listeners. Let me tell you why I was able to succeed and what I still employ in order to see success in what I do to this day.
When I worked for a Big 4 in Strategic Relationship Management I quickly learned that the firm never advertised their business. Although they made millions and they could have invested in all sorts of advertising they never did. Advertising was not the key to their success. In my roll I was responsible to help maintain that success by being a strategic team member. I did that through relationship management.
Every successful business deal was accomplished because of a relationship we possessed and we built those relationships not by what others paid us for but based upon what we offered them. I would arrange the networking events for CEOs, the sporting event with a key client to build relationship, I looked for ways I could be helpful to clients in their careers, I was the one introducing the new hire to the CEO to bring their career to the next level, I arranged the networking events and would be the first person to greet whomever walked in the door and I would study the lives of those we knew so we could have stronger relationships with them.
In fact, at one point I was trained to be able to read a persons linkedin profile and then tell you what personality type they had and who on our team would be the most effective in developing a relationship with them. Relationships in essence was my job although I produced many deliverables to be able to maintain them.
What I learned through all of this was the value I invested into others was more important than what I got back. I never approached any of my interactions based upon what I might get, I was simply there to create value if needed. I discovered that if I could give freely what I had to offer to others that not only were others around me more successful but I was able to build relationships that would last for the long term.
The reason my internet radio show was such a success was not based upon my popularity but it was because I was giving value to the listeners by having amazing guests on and because I was investing in my guests by giving them a new audience to share their message. My guests were all individuals that were making a positive impact in some way, some very well-known and some were not. But regardless, they were people that were bringing value in what they did. Listeners enjoyed receiving value from my program and guests loved to give value to the listeners. We all benefited from it. It succeeded because "we" brought value to each other.
So bringing value really is learning how to invest in other people without expecting anything in return. Some of the guests I had on my program are still friends today and we never know how I might be able to once again bring them value or they can give value into my life through what they know or maybe someone they know. Those of you who listened to my program and still follow me today I try to continue to give into your lives as much as I can and as a result we build value together.
When we approach relationships from the viewpoint of long-term investment and what we can offer others we don’t have to advertise or use commercials to succeed. We simply have learned that investing and giving into people’s lives is what allows us to succeed. You may have heard the term “you reap what you sow”. If you plant corn you aren’t going to reap apples. So to reap anything of value you have to give that value first.
I think the key to the growth of my side business that I did for "fun" that resulted in an income I now depend on, was simply because I gave freely. I taught classes freely and helped others succeed freely. Now this doesn't mean you do things for others all of the time, because part of investing is not just giving someone a fish but teaching them how to fish. But if you learn how to invest in your relationships and into people one on one, there is really nothing you cannot do.
Below are a few knowledge flows I built which outline the process I have used in the past when consulting someone on building their value and/or communicating that to others. You won’t find all of the meat on how to implement these flows but it is the process I have walked people through to grow in these areas. Should you be interested in my advice I am available to consult anyone in these areas or speak on them.