Thursday, August 14, 2014

The 1st Tool to Use When Connecting Others

I remember, years ago when I was a young buyer of Milliken's Department store in Traverse City, Michigan, a good friend of mine was looking for a small space for her new lingerie design business to start in. She needed space for her design table and a clothing rack and for her seamstress.

I found what I thought would be the perfect space for her. It was a small room, just big enough for two people to work in for only $150 a month.

I was confused when I told her about it and she said that it was too expensive. She then said, "If you have a lot of money, $150 is a little money. If you have a little money,  $150 is a lot of money.When you're broke, every penny counts."

Sometimes we can't help a person find a solution until we listen long enough to fully understand the problem. Listen first, then offer a solution.

In this case, her problem wasn't that she couldn't find a spot to lease, it was that her funds were low.

As business networkers, we love finding solutions for people. Sometimes it's like a puzzle and you're the puzzle master putting the right pieces together, making connections, and solving problems.

I've found that listening is the greatest and the first tool you should use for helping others. Listen first, ask questions and listen again. You'll give better referrals, make better connections and offer better solutions with better listening.

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