When I was doing network marketing a few years ago, one advice was consistently repeated by all leaders: Talk To People. It was the scariest, most difficult advice to follow for many distributors –and for good reason. Can you imagine engaging a conversation with a total stranger in a bus, in a bank line-up or worse, during a networking event after the organisers have separated you from the friend who dragged you there? I had never done anything as intimidating in my life!However, since I was told that talking to people would ensure success for my business, I started doing it; with a big knot in the stomach. I would get on a bus, sit next to a stranger, introduce myself and by the time I alighted, I knew the person’s name and phone number, their marital status, and whether they were employed or not. I started making cold calls and gradually I became more confident. Soon, I had a big database of names and made many new friends.
Today approaching a stranger or making a cold call still feels scary, and the knot in the stomach is always there, but I’ve gotten used to it. Through this experience, I’ve learned one invaluable lesson in business: just ask. Don’t be shy to ask. The worst that can happen to you is a no. You will be amazed by the quantity and quality of information and contacts you’ll collect just by asking. And especially you’ll be astounded by how many people are open to assist you with what you are looking for.
Go ahead, get talking!
Find out how you can get the most out of your networking efforts in James Karundu’s new column The Start-Up Success Guide on Mkazi website. The motivational speaker, author, and founder and CEO of PassionBiz Academy teaches start-ups how to start a high income business from your passion, brilliance and expertise.