After the economic melt down of 2009, I realized how critical it is to continue to prospect for customers, especially when things are going well for you. With that in mind, we hired a lead generation company to help fill our pipeline. They work with us to reach out to contacts on LinkedIn and create connections for us to work with. They provide a dashboard that I work daily. It’s not perfect, and there still is work to be done, but there have been a few gems that have come from it.
I recently had a conversation with a connection that came from this effort. It was one of the best telephone conversations I’ve had. Not because of the potential to do business, because there is very little chance that we could add value for them, but because of the professionalism of their COO that I spoke with. To that point, I sent him one of the books I’ve published. He, in return, wrote me a handwritten note thanking me for the book and promising to share feedback on it when he had a chance to read it.
When you get bogged down in the day to day grind of selling and prospecting, it’s easy to drop prospecting and it’s easy to even get a little depressed. I have literally hundreds of connections that I’ve made in the past few months, but few want to hold a conversation. When you are an independent contractor, and the money is not flowing, you can become anxious. It took me years to understand that it will come if you follow your processes and if you do kind things.
Ohio State University recently did a study on kindness. They asked students who may have been anxious or depressed to do three kind things for others two days a week. What they found was that doing kind things for others, benefited the individuals themselves. They had a much more positive view of their own lives.
It wasn’t a massive undertaking to do kind things. It was a simple as holding a door open or smiling at people or complimenting them. After hearing of the study from a good friend, I personally took on the tasks of doing kind things, and counting them. I’m now up to five in a day. And it feels great!
Receiving a handwritten note in the mail from a connection I made on LinkedIn, simply reinforced the study for me. I know how uplifting it was and I will use it to help others. Simple acts of kindness for others can change the world!