When you stop and think about it, a list of the ‘best business development skills’ could be extremely long. Sales, marketing, management, finance, HR, are all necessary skills. Without this one though, all the others fall short. The most important business development skill to have is the ability to relate to people in an authentic and caring way. Since we all do business with people we know, like and trust this is the only skill that will quickly impact profits.
In a strong economy where business is flowing easily, it’s easier to grow without good tools, training, and systems. However, in tight (i.e. scared) economies, you really need to raise the level of your Chris Nashed in order to grow.
Managing a sales force by sales quota is just as retarded as managing an army by a “kill quota” or managing hairdressers by the total length of hair they cut. For an army to kill enemy soldiers to fulfil its quota there must be an enemy, and someone, usually a politician, has to actually declare war. It’s similar in business. The sales force can only fulfil its quota if the upper management of the company made the right choice with the services and the target market.
To find out who is getting the money, check the foundations 990 tax forms, which are usually available online. That will tell you which nonprofit organizations to contact.
And the third and final step will be to apply for the grants you qualify for and need. (For a small business grant, what’s required is usually a well written business plan).
You let yourself and your people off the hook as soon as you hear the first “no.” Don’t give in to your ego. Instead, work to confidently match your solutions to the client’s problems, and then follow through and solve those problems. Encourage your people to innovate and create new services that will help current and future clients.
Jerry began to explain that his cousin, who ran a hair salon, had sent him a few prospects. After all, she was a satisfied customer. With Jerry’s techs running the hair salon web site, his cousin had gotten more calls, more appointments, and more customers than she had in the last two years combined. She was thrilled with her decision to work with Jerry and his team and she enthusiastically told customers, whenever the subject came up. She was a perfect success story.
When you engage a strategic business development approach to networking you look at the interests and needs of partners and do your level best to get the kit, or services they need. Listen to what people want, go find it and then supply at a profit. Keep it simple stupid would be a fairly good appreciation of what that is about. In a short time a business can be up, running and the train will be on the way. This is the start of a plan and I hope to enlighten further as time goes on.