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Why Don’t More People Give Referrals Freely?

Considering that networking is one of the things INTEGRITY Networking Solutions is known, for I am often left to ponder why it is that more people do not spend more time giving referrals freely.  Most of the people we surround ourselves with are familiar with the concept of “giving to receive to give again” yet they still avoid the process of giving the referral.

A realtor came to me recently asking, “Why is it that my friends and relatives ask others to list their house rather than me?”  My answer is that you are doing everything right!  The reason they avoid asking is that the do not want to risk damaging a good friendship or family relationship over a bad business deal.  And then it happened to us.

Lynne and I traveled to Florida in June to see my dad.  We chose to have our dogs stay in our home rather than kennel them while we are away.  We have had licensed pet sitters stay with the dogs (referred by a business associates.)  We have had friends stay with the dogs.  Sometimes we have had a friend refer someone to stay with the dogs.  Up until now all has worked out surprisingly well. And then it happened to us.

We arrived home from our trip to see dad and all was well.  The pet sitter (also a pet technician at a local veterinary clinic) met us at our house.  The dogs were obviously in love with the sitter.  They had really bonded.  Everything appeared in order.

Over the next few days we started to notice little things were out of order.  Someone had used my grill.  (It was six inches away from the wall I store it on.  The grates were covered with a film of grease.  I always burn the grease off after cooking by turning up the heat to high.)  There were some small holes in the sunroom screen door where someone had leaned one of our bicycles against the screen. And then it happened to us.

Lynne was going through a kitchen drawer where she stores “stuff” and noticed a watch she received for a Christmas gift was gone as well as her engagement ring which I had given her in 1973.  Frantic, we went through the house to find everything else was in place.  After the panic, we settled down with what we already knew.  There was a party at our house while we were away.  One of the guests (we assumed) found themselves alone in the kitchen, picked the right drawer to look through and helped themselves to a few “party favors.”

The good news is that all has been restored.  With some clever work from the Oceanside Police Department and being non-confrontational with the sitter, the ring and watch mysteriously showed up in our mail box two weeks later.

Rest assured, we continue to “hook people up” whenever we get the chance.  At the same time we could have learned to:

¨      Check references with past employers

¨      Hire a licensed and bonded pet sitter

¨      Check with the police department for past complaints

The moral of this story is, refer freely, then it is up to the person receiving the referral to do the homework necessary to be sure that they are getting all that they want.  Had we checked with past employers we still would have hired the sitter.  A bonded and licensed pet sitter cost $70 per day.  The sitter who was referred cost $25 per day.  (The referral and the cost were the deciding factors.)

I am sure there are other stories like this.  I have a few more that I could share, like the time we paid the referred painter the full contract price to leave our house before the job was completed. Then there was the time the referred gardener repaired the sprinkler system.  The next morning Lynne awoke to the sprinklers sending a jet of water over our fence onto the adjacent street.  I will hold those for another time.

When we practice giving referrals freely we do better business.  Which points to the other side of this conversation.  How many times have we had a bad business deal when we “let our fingers do the walking through the Yellow Pages?”  More often by my count than having someone referred.

Gerry Rose runs INTEGRITY Networking Solutions in Oceanside, CA.  He works with realtors who want to attract the right prospects and their affinity partners who want to generate more referrals.  More than 10,000 businesses have been presented the INTEGRITY Networking Solutions system in San Diego, Riverside, and Orange Counties.

Gerry’s stimulating presentation Unlimited Prospects, Unlimited Referrals is ideally suited for small business owners, home-based businesses, and independent professionals who want clearer direction and want to attract more prospects, develop dynamic systems, and strengthen their companies’ accountability.  Gerry does one on one consulting, conducts a range of keynote speeches from thirty minutes to full-day education workshops.

His book series, Unlimited Prospects, Unlimited Referrals, are available on the website, www.integritysd.com.

Gerry has more than 20 years’ experience directing business owners how to grow their businesses.  He is a networking dynamo.  Those who know him will assure you that he does a great job of bringing people together—which is why he started Integrity.

Involved with networking organizations since 1984, Gerry is a Distinguished Toastmaster, a member of Toastmaster International, and has chaired numerous chambers of commerce and non-profit organizations.

Are you truly committed to attracting the right prospects and generate more referrals?  If so then contact INTEGRITY Networking Solutions for availability and information.  You can contact Gerry by mail at 1610 Quiet Hills Drive, Oceanside, CA 92056.  Direct dial (760) 439-4623; e-mail to gerry@integritysd.com.  For more information, go to www.integritysd.com

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