Are you building a business and have not a clue how to meet people and get leads? Maybe you say yes to groups that meet once a week or once a month. Maybe this works for you and you love the socialization. Maybe you, like me, have a hard time connecting, you feel drained after these events, you do not feel that you want to refer some of these folks.

However, you feel obligated. You ALWAYS feel obligated… so you keep saying YES. You say yes and your stomach churns. Voices run around in your head saying, “Why did I commit to this?” “Why do I go to this every week and feel this way?” “How else would I make connections?” “I must force myself to do these events and continue to hope for referrals.”

I have news for you! It is ok to pause before saying yes. My rule is called the 24-hour rule. You can say, “Thank you for asking me to join. May I get back to you tomorrow?” Then ask yourself a few questions:

  1. 1. Will I regret saying YES next week?
  2. 2. Will I be able to add to this group with a positive, happy outlook?
  3. 3. Will I really grow my business by attending this event?
  4. 4. Is there another way to utilize my time and talents that I may enjoy more?
  5. 5. Can I honestly say I am thrilled and excited to be a part of this amazing opportunity?
  6. 6. Can I say no and be ok inside my skin saying no?

There are so many opportunities out there to meet and connect with people to grow your business. Some ways may be a bit outside of the box. However, I have used these and my experience has shown that they work.

What do you love doing? Do you love to hike, bike, walk in the woods, spend time with your family, your dogs, your friends?  Start spending time doing what you LIKE to do.  For example, I love to spend time in nature and with my dogs. I am a bit of a loner, yet I realize at our core we are all social beings. So, I created a Facebook Page for my dog Eddie.

When I am out and about in the community, I ask other dog owners if I may take a photo of their dog to post on Eddie’s Facebook Page.  Sometimes, I will ask them to pose with Eddie even if they don’t have a dog and then ask permission to post on his page.

Then I throw in the line, “Really, I use him for marketing purposes…” I inevitably get a chuckle and a “What do you do for a living?” This opens the door to a relationship. They “like” Eddie’s page and usually end up becoming a friend on Facebook, and/or “liking” my business page. I run into people all over the community that know about my business because of Eddie’s Facebook Page.

When you focus on what you love and surround yourself with others who also enjoy this activity, you can create ways to become a leader, so to speak. You can make a Facebook private group, where you all keep each other informed about this activity. You can start a group email to touch base weekly or monthly to find out more about this activity.

Whenever you lead, people are more curious to know about you and what you do for a living. Business is all about creating relationships. Trust and time equal confidence in a person which leads to wanting to do business with that person. 

For more fun “out-of-the-box” ideas on ways to Connect, Communicate and Engage to grow your business, email me for a free 30-minute consultation.

Happy learning to say NO, and happy living a life that feels happy and free!