Have you ever tried pushing a rope! Rhetorical question because it simply doesn’t work. The same thing is true for trying to persuade someone else that they need to think or lead differently – it doesn’t work. What I’ve learned in the past decade as a student of business relationships is that you have to create pull or market gravity, as Alan Weiss likes to say. You have to appeal to their logical self interest to begin to look at their condition from a different lens. You have to engage them and influence their thinking and call to action.
Here is the #NewNorm framework I’ve created this year to help you elevate yourself above the market noise:
1. Become an Object of Interest – let your body of work (writing, speaking, panel discussions, questions you ask others in LinkedIn Groups or Facebook Fan Pages, or Twitter Chats) elevate you above the noise!
2. Develop Broad Market Relationships – they become a great source of insights about the relationships most critical to your success; inside and outside the organization, the more diversified your portfolio of relationships, the broader your influence footprint.
3. Ensure Economic Buyer – are you dealing with the person who has both the willingness and the ability to solve challenges or take advantage of market opportunities? Otherwise, you’re wasting your time, effort and resources dealing with mid level people.
4. Provide Value, Provoke, Bring a Contrarian Perspective – most execs I know are surrounded by “yes people;” often useless because they’re too afraid to say what others won’t. If the relationship is important to you, you have to add value, provoke, and bring a unique perspective every time.
Work on these and in a couple of days, I’ll add the other four. By the way, I have a three touch rule: I’ll invest three times in a relationship but if they don’t get it, I’m polite but move on. You simply can’t afford to spend a lot of cycles trying to persuade someone that you’re providing a machine gun when they’re out battling in the market with knives!
Make it a great week.