What would you look for in a business partner or employee?
- Integrity (someone you can rely on to do what they say they will)?
- Consistency (someone who will stick with the agreed habits)?
- Commitment (will think outside the square & go the extra mile to get the result)?
- Reliability (someone you can count on)?
- Good attitude (rises above, deals well with disappointment, is adaptable)?
People often “talk a good game” but…..
As an employer, have you ever employed someone who “interviewed” really well who did not live up to your expectations?
Especially in terms of the attributes listed above!
It is therefore especially valuable when someone you trust highly recommends someone they know as a potential business partner or employee.
When you build a network (rather than “go networking”)
You spend time helping others build their networks.
In the process, you get to know them very well.
In particular you get to know things such as:
- Are they excuse makers or over-comers?
- What is their attitude like?
- Do they naturally advocate for others – or are they mostly about themselves?
- How do they work in a team?
- Are they consistent?
If they they tick these boxes, it is very easily to enthusiastically advocate for them to others
In fact when someone really impresses you, you will probably look for opportunities for them. And to impress you, they don’t have to be wizards – it’s not difficult to be genuine, authentic, willing and have a good attitude – anyone can do it.
They may be quiet achievers and not “interview” particularly well.
But that’s where your advocacy of them can be of immense help….
And so it is with you!
When you commit to building your network, you are doing far more than just building your network – you are showing others your true character and making it easy for them to advocate for you.
Who gains the most – givers or takers?
What does the research show?
Watch the following great video by professor Adam Grant
How do you build trust?
When you connect people in business and great things happen as a result, your trust level goes “through the roof”.
This does not require that the parties involved are using your services – they are very grateful to you for connecting them and they will return the favour – it’s called…..
The Law of Reciprocity
The following article by Gary Korisko, explains so well how trust and results can be gained using the law of reciprocity
How The Law of Reciprocity Can Make or Break Your Business
Have you ever noticed that you feel compelled to do something for people who have helped you along the way – even if they haven’t asked you to?
There’s something very powerful at play that causes this phenomenon.
Social psychologists call it The Law of Reciprocity – and it basically says that when someone does something nice for you, you will have a deep-rooted psychological urge to do something nice in return.
As a matter of fact, you may even reciprocate with a gesture far more generous than their original good deed.
You can try and resist this law, but as a human, you will more than likely still feel that you need to respond in kind to a good deed.
If that’s true (and it is) then it would be to your advantage to understand the right way – and the wrong way to take advantage of this powerful law.
Reciprocity and The Business Person
As someone who is running (or is aspiring to run) their own business, there are a couple of ways you can choose to use this power: for good – or for evil. Or, for our purposes, the right way and the wrong way.
The Right Way:
One of the hardest parts of a new business relationship is building trust and rapport. And to do that, there are some things you have to establish up front with a new prospect to show them you’re one of the good guys. Things like intent, empathy, and credibility.
So, if you really are one of the good guys, you can show people what you’re made of simply by being friendly, honest, and helpful. That’s the idea behind a lot of the freebies that bloggers give away all the time. By giving something that’s of legitimate value away with no expectation of compensation, you’re achieving several things.
- If the material or help you’re giving away is of high quality, you’re establishing yourself as a person of credibility – someone who knows what they’re talking about.
- You’re demonstrating empathy by showing the recipient that you understand they’re looking for answers. You understand that they need help – and you’re someone who’s willing to give it to them.
- You’re showing that your intent is not just to get into their wallets – but to sincerely help.
And in the process, you put The Law of Reciprocity into play. When you establish yourself as an honest, sincere, and giving person – you make it much easier for people to buy from you when you have something to offer.
At that point they already like you, they have seen that you know your stuff, and they trust you. All that makes it much easier for them to choose you.
The Wrong Way:
While responding to The Law of Reciprocity is hard-wired into us, most people aren’t stupid. If the law is exploited as a tactic, they can smell it from a mile away and it won’t work. At least it won’t work long-term.
Exploiting the law means using it as a front. Pretending to be sincere and helpful only to trick people into feeling a sense of obligation to a future sales pitch. Lousy salespeople are easy to find – and when someone is using reciprocity as a pressure tactic, it’s obvious.
You’ve been there as a consumer. I’ll bet you don’t have to go back very far in your memory bank to remember a time when someone seemed a little too nice. Even though they were doing something positive for you, you still instinctively didn’t trust them.
That’s because their intentions weren’t sincere and you sensed it. Using the law that way may trick someone from time to time, but it likely won’t lead to repeat sales, good will, or referrals. Pressured prospects tend to disappear quietly. Sometimes not so quietly.
The right way to gain maximum benefit from the Law of reciprocity is to use it sincerely and for the right reasons: to help others and to grow your relationships.
The post-COVID environment provides the opportunity to see things differently!