A very poor habit of most entrepreneurs is to attend major business conferences – go back to the jungle of life – and put their notes/binders/books on the shelf. Then it just becomes ‘shelf help’ and you might as well have stayed home in the first place.
I see it happen all the time. People spend the time, money and resources to get out to major events, take lots of notes, meet new people and make promises of follow-up and then……..sadly……..no follow through. That’s leaving money on the table, people!
It really is just a bad habit. Going to a business event without a plan for specific follow up and implementation is as effective as throwing cash out the window. You wouldn’t consciously do that, would you? So why would you go to events without a plan? It’s the same thing.
WHAT SHOULD YOU DO?
I’m so happy you asked, LOL! Do what I do – make a plan – identify 3 specific goals and stay focused on them. Anyone can focus on just three things!
I went to a major conference in Miami last week – hosted by Entrepreneur Magazine – and I want to share my 3 goals and what I intend to do as follow up. Take a page out of my book and start to implement in the same way. It will definitely pay off for you.
#1: THE BARBARA CORCORAN REPORT.
Barbara Corcoran was the opening keynote speaker at this conference. That really was the major draw for me to make the decision to travel from the Toronto area all the way down to Miami for a day. In her presentation, Barbara shared her success story – and one of her key points is to ‘make the media your friend’. In the early days of her business, she did a number of different things to get the attention of the media. One such thing was, when she heard that Madonna was looking for real estate in New York City, Barbara made a list of specific things Madonna should look for and be aware of as she steps into the purchase in the Big Apple – and she called that The Madonna Report. The media picked up on that and, before she knew it, Barbara was being called the Realtor to the Celebrities.
SO WHAT, YOU ASK? Well, I intend to take the top notes of what I learned from Barbara’s keynote and am going to create the Barbara Corcoran report – and send that to the media (finding ways of letting Barbara know of this same report!). What difference will it make? If nothing else, it is a unique twist to a story that just may grab the attention of local media for me.
TIP #2: PITCHING TO THE EDITORS OF ENTREPRENEUR MAGAZINE
This was absolutely one of my top goals and a major reason for attending the conference too. I practiced my pitch with my speaking coach well ahead of time. Of the 800+ attendees at the conference, about 200 of us (who applied in advance) got the opportunity to make the pitch. We had 3 minutes to get our message across – who are we, what solution do we provide, what makes us unique, etc. – and I pulled it off – and was invited to submit articles to the contributing editor. Whooohooooo! I also learned, as I asked so many of the others in that room doing a pitch, that very few of us actually got the invitation to take the next step.
SO WHAT, YOU ASK? Having just heard Barbara Corcoran speak on the benefits of making the media your friend, I couldn’t ask for a better (or larger) platform for my own message and story and solution for entrepreneurs! The key is to get very clear – be confident – and go after what you want. Done! What difference will it make? The answer to this is self-evident. Watch for my articles – I promise some great content.
TIP #3: NETWORK AND ESTABLISH NEW RELATIONSHIPS
One of my major goals at this event (outside of my ‘industry bubble’) was to meet some new and different types of business owners. I goal set to meet 3 with whom I felt a rapport and synergy – and where we could benefit from mutual support. That didn’t take very long because I a) made sure to sit at a different table each session; b) took the lead and introduce myself to people; c) made a point of thanking the event team for all the great work they were doing behind the scenes – which paid off when one of them made sure I got a photo taken with Barbara Corcoran (go back up to tip #1!!).
SO WHAT, YOU ASK? It’s always important to broaden your relationships – meet new people – giving you new perspective. Ensure there is energy and synergy and the willingness to take the relationship to the next step beyond the conference or event. Mission accomplished for me. I now have 3 new connections in Washington, D.C., Philadelphia and Florida. Fabulous! Growing your business as an entrepreneur is all about relationships! Pay attention to that. (note: I have already sent follow up emails to each of the individuals ………taking it to the next step.)
SHE WHO IMPLEMENTS, WINS!
It’s really great to get out and about to different events. Keep in mind – time is money – and it’s all about implementation and relationships. Make it a habit to get focused before going to your next event – set 3 goals to accomplish while you are AT the event – and then, hold yourself accountable to implementing 3 things once you get back into your daily world. That’s what makes the difference. That is what will set you apart from the crowd. That is how you grow a business!