Helping Busy People Succeed

Personal Development

Have you ever wondered what to give a boss, client or contact you want to build a relationship with?

A night out at a hockey game, dinner at a fancy restaurant, or even an expensive bottle of wine (although they’d take it) doesn’t cut in any more. Busy and important people typically don’t have a need for material items so gifts and grand gestures don’t produce the good will you might hope. They also don’t have a lot of discretionary time so spending an evening out isn’t really what they’re looking for.

If you want to engage with, and create value for, busy and important decision makers remember the four (4) I’s:

  1. Information. Busy people, are well…busy. They don’t have a lot of time to research the latest trends or happenings that could affect their business or industry. You can do that work for them by emailing them highlights from a relevant article, or send them a book—I often order several copies of a book I’m reading just to give a few away—with relevant pages flagged.
  2. Introductions. Connecting people to someone that could benefit their business or life can be invaluable. Whether it’s a potential new customer for them or a strategic partner, there is value in connections and this is something they wouldn’t be able to get on their own. In your conversations with people try to discover a need they have and see if one of your contacts could help them fulfill it. Referrals create something you can’t buy: trust and rapport.
  3. Invitations. Exclusive events or settings where they will receive information or important introductions are valuable. Many professional service firms create conferences or events to help their clients achieve these first two I’s. Hosting a special activity builds better relationships and helps everyone progress.
  4. Image. Leaders are the public face to their organizations and almost everyone could use more publicity and awareness. You can interview them for your blog (a new series I’m doing is coming up), send one of their articles to your peers, or share their social media statuses with your network. Even if you have a smaller network, it’s a meaningful gesture that can go a long way.

Adding value ultimately comes down to knowing someone well enough to understand where to help them succeed. The goal for every leader is to help others reach their goals and you’ll be surprised at what those returns to you will be.

Have a great day!

– Braden