The Person You Interview Now Might Someday Hire You

By Jeff Beals

When I arrived at the venue where I would be speaking, a woman was standing at the front entrance, propping open the normally locked door.  I assumed she was there to let me in.

“Hi, I’m Jeff,” I said. “I’m scheduled to speak this morning.”

As it turned out, the door greeter was my client, Jamie, the person who first contacted my office and made the arrangements for me to speak. As soon as I introduced myself, she said, “I saw you getting out of your car and recognized you. We’ve actually met in the past.”

She looked familiar but I couldn’t remember how we knew each other. I hate it when I can’t remember a name or why I know somebody!

About an hour later, it was time for me to speak. Jamie did the introduction:

“Back in 2008, I applied for a job, a position I really wanted at the time. The hiring manager was today’s speaker, Jeff Beals…”

Uh oh! This was awkward…I’d never heard this in an introduction before.

Suddenly I remembered Jamie. I remembered interviewing her back in 2008. She was an outstanding candidate who made the final two. I would have offered her the job if the other candidate hadn’t been just a little more qualified.  Several thoughts went through my head. Was she angry I didn’t hire her?  What was she going to say next?!!?

“I didn’t get the job,” Jamie continued. “I was so disappointed, but Jeff called me the next day and explained why I didn’t get the job.”

She said she really appreciated the call and that it helped her crystalize in her mind what she really wanted to do with her career.  She said that when the opportunity came to select a speaker for her organization, she recommended me.

Wow!  I went from an uneasy feeling of nervousness to a warmly humbling feeling. It was so gratifying to receive positive feedback in a public forum, and I was certainly thankful I made that call to her several years ago.

Jamie and I talked over lunch following the presentation. What a gift it was to have this experience! How nice it was to hear about the impact an otherwise unpleasant phone call had on another person.

During the conversation, Jamie smiled a bit and said, “I bet you never thought you’d be hired for a speech by a person you didn’t hire for a job back in 2008!”

A truer statement has never been said.

You just never know from where opportunity will come.  You never know who will come in and out of your life and when and for what reason.

I’m lucky I made that phone call years ago, because it eventually led to a business opportunity, a friendship and a cool experience.  I now find myself wondering how many other opportunities I may have missed because I failed to make similar calls to other people.

Jeff Beals is a professional speaker, sales consultant and award-winning author, who helps professionals enjoy greater success through effective sales, marketing and personal branding techniques. He delivers energetic and humorous keynote speeches and workshops to audiences worldwide. To discuss booking a presentation, go to JeffBeals.com or email at info@jeffbeals.com or call us at (402) 637-9300.

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Here’s Why You Should Think Like a Real Estate Agent

By Jeff Beals

 

There is a real estate sales concept known as “farming” in which residential real estate agents choose a certain geographic area to place particular emphasis. It typically is one neighborhood or subdivision consisting of a few hundred houses. This area becomes the real estate agent’s “farm.”

 

There’s nothing to stop such a real estate agent from doing deals outside her “farm” in a variety of neighborhoods throughout the city, but she places particular prospecting focus on the one neighborhood. She memorizes all the houses in that subdivision and tries to get to know all the current owners. She becomes the specialist or expert in that neighborhood. She makes sure every homeowner in her “farm” has calendars, pens and other tchotchkes with her name and contact information on them. If the neighborhood has a Fourth of July parade or a block party, she’s there.

 

The hope is that anyone thinking of selling a house in the neighborhood would think of the agent and list the house with that expert agent.

 

There are other forms of real estate “farming.” Some agents “farm” an organization like Rotary or a country club as a way of finding clients. Farms don’t necessarily have to be geographic.

 

Professionals of any industry can learn a lot from real estate farming not just from a selling perspective but from a personal branding or self-promotion perspective.

 

While professionals like you and me probably won’t focus on a residential subdivision as we build our personal brands, there is a lot to be gained by farming your industry or your community.

 

Real estate agents, as well as salespeople in a variety of other fields, should develop spheres of interest. These would be groups of people they work with, socialize with or share some other common interest. These spheres of interest help salespeople find new clients.

 

Having a sphere of interest is similarly important for anyone trying to build a bigger and better personal brand, because just like a real estate agent you too are selling. What’s the difference? You’re selling yourself.

Jeff Beals is a professional speaker, sales consultant and award-winning author, who helps professionals enjoy greater success through effective sales, marketing and personal branding techniques. He delivers energetic and humorous keynote speeches and workshops to audiences worldwide. To discuss booking a presentation, go to JeffBeals.com or email at info@jeffbeals.com or call us at (402) 637-9300.

FREE eBOOK: Would You Like To Profit From the Networking Events You Attend?

Everyone knows you need to network in order to find new clients or land a new job, yet most people don’t do a very good job of it.  Why? Because they don’t network with a purpose. Don’t fall behind the competition!  “Goal-Based Networking,” a brand-new, free eBook, will help you turn networking into new business or professional opportunities.  What do you get?  23 quick-reading pages with networking and prospecting advice you can implement today. This eBook will make networking both enjoyable and profitable for you!

Download the “Goal-Based Networking” eBook Now >>

 

Sell Yourself the Way a Salesperson Sells

By Jeff Beals

Sales professionals talk about their “funnels” or their “pipelines” when discussing prospective clients and where those prospects are in the buying process.

Picture a big funnel like something you would use to pour oil into an engine. Instead of serving as a conduit for liquid, however, the sales funnel is a conduit for turning prospects into clients.

At the top of the funnel would be all the prospects that exist. As you go down the funnel, the opening narrows, meaning there is less space for prospects. Each step in the sales process requires you to go farther down into a narrower funnel. At the very bottom, only a few prospects drip out. Those “drips” represent the prospects who actually become clients.

When promoting your personal brand, you want to keep the funnel analogy in mind.

Let’s say you’re interested in a new job

In the job-search funnel, you have all possible employers at the top.  A little ways down, you have the employers you actually meet. Next are the employers who actually receive your resume. Those with whom you interview are farther down the funnel. At the very bottom of the funnel would the employer who actually offers you the job you end up accepting.

Let’s say you’re interested in new clients

In the client-acquisition funnel, you have all prospective clients at the top. Other steps moving down from the top to the narrower parts would include those who hear about you, those who call you, those you meet in person, and those you engage in serious negotiation. Finally, the clients who actually sign contracts with you are represent the drops falling out of the funnel’s base.

When dealing with a funnel, you are working on people at every stage of the buying process. You should devote more time per prospect to those who are farther down. When you meet a new prospect, a “top-of-funnel person,” don’t worry about turning her into a closed deal right away. If you meet a potential employer, don’t expect to jump to a job offer right away. Your goal with any person in a funnel should be to advance him or her to the next step. Don’t worry about the end; just focus on pushing each person one step deeper into the funnel.

Fill the hopper

While you have to spend more time per person on prospects near the funnel’s bottom, you can’t forget the top. Some sales people focus so heavily on closing deals that months go by in which they don’t do any new prospecting. When their current deals either close or die, there’s nothing new. If a job seeker spends all his time focusing on one potential job, he can be left out in the cold if the job falls through and no other prospects are in his funnel. You must constantly fill the hopper.

Personal Brand Funnel

So how does the funnel relate to personal branding (or building a bigger name and reputation for yourself)?

Keep in mind that you are not just a person. You’re an entity, a brand, a business of one, a business unto yourself. The more people who have heard your name and have a positive feeling associated with your name, the more opportunities – both personal and professional – you will receive. Just as a business markets itself perpetually so must you.

People do business with other people. Regardless of what you do for a living, it’s in your best interest to never stop “prospecting,” meaning you are constantly looking to meet new people. Once you meet them, slowly push them through your personal funnel until they eventually become close relationships with whom you can share mutually beneficial opportunities.

Jeff Beals is a professional speaker, sales consultant and award-winning author, who helps professionals enjoy greater success through effective sales, marketing and personal branding techniques. He delivers energetic and humorous keynote speeches and workshops to audiences worldwide. To discuss booking a presentation, go to JeffBeals.com or email at info@jeffbeals.com or call us at (402) 637-9300.

FREE eBOOK: Would You Like To Profit From the Networking Events You Attend?

Everyone knows you need to network in order to find new clients or land a new job, yet most people don’t do a very good job of it.  Why? Because they don’t network with a purpose. Don’t fall behind the competition!  “Goal-Based Networking,” a brand-new, free eBook, will help you turn networking into new business or professional opportunities.  What do you get?  23 quick-reading pages with networking and prospecting advice you can implement today. This eBook will make networking both enjoyable and profitable for you!

Download the “Goal-Based Networking” eBook Now >>