As we all know by now, networking is one of the best ways to develop our business relationships. Clients obtained by word of mouth are quite often the best ones we’ve ever had. They require far less work to sell to and sometimes even show up at our door, signed contract in hand.
But what about the personal side?
For Lisa and I, we got to experience this aspect of networking about two years ago. We were in deep trouble. Our daughter Kaylie was only a few months old. The nanny we had lined up prior to Kaylie’s birth had emailed us one week before she was supposed to start to let us know that she had decided to take a job elsewhere. Going through Craigslist, we found another (the only acceptable one in the batch) who then promptly let us know that she had decided to stop being a nanny.
Sleep-deprived and at our wits end, Lisa and I didn’t know where to turn next. Then one day I mentioned our troubles to a networking acquaintance at my sales training class. He said to me “I have someone I’d like you to meet.”
Not long after that, his daughter-in-law, Beth, came to work for us as our new nanny. She has been a godsend. While Kaylie was very young, Beth taught her some basic sign language so she could tell us when she was hungry or tired. As Kaylie got older, Beth took her to play groups and doctors visits. She walked her to the library and the local petting farm. In short, she’s our very own Mary Poppins.
Lisa and I often joke with each other that you can tell we are good parents because we hired only the best to raise our child. Kaylie’s happy demeanor and fearless curiosity about the world show that we obviously made a good choice.
But we never would have had that choice had it not been for a little bit of good networking.