Improved Networking Through Education Generating Relationships Increases The Yield



While I was working on my auto hobby business this past weekend Lynne and I went to buy seat belts at the Oceanside Auto Zone.  We went to this particular store to buy them because we saw that they were available on their Internet website. They had one in stock. The store clerk greeted us asking, “How can I help you?”  We told him the purpose for our visit to which he replied, “We don’t carry seat belts.”  We told him of our Internet research to which he replied, “Do you have a part number?”  We had not brought the part number with us.  As we started to go through the store aisle by aisle he asked twice more if we had the part number.  Finally, frustrated with his repeated question, we asked him to allow us to walk through the store by ourselves.  Less than two minutes later he delivered the seat belt to us making a sarcastic remark about our mood.

That same evening we were standing in line waiting to order our evening meal at the local gas station (details to be delivered if you ask.)  The couple in front of us were ordering their food.  I overheard the man telling his pregnant wife the different types of corn there was available, asking her each time if she wanted some.  It was obvious from her first reply that she did not want any corn regardless of how it was to be eaten or delivered (plated or on the cob.)  This fellow asked his wife three separate times the same question getting the same reply, “I don’t want corn!”

These two events on the same day started me thinking.  It seems to me that the Internet should make our lives easier, yet it also seems that customer service has become less personal.  As we were able to discover seat belts on the Auto Zone website it would seem that the clerk would know (or would be taught) to do his own search after we told him we discovered seat belts in his store on the Internet.  It always amazes me that people have lost (or maybe never had) the ability to listen or desire to hear what others say.  It seems like we have become too harried to listen or interact with compassion.  With all the communication we do with texting, emails, and social media outlets we have become a society of mind numbing robots who just don’t care.

It seems to hold true even when young couples are out on date night.  The couple at the gas station were obviously out for what appeared to be one of their last nights without a child.  This young man was having trouble listening to his young wife.  As Lynne and I often observe when eating out, families of four (mom, dad, and two children) are each using their mobile devices texting/listening/talking to someone else.  It even happens when moms stroll their children on afternoon and evening walks interacting with the cellular phone rather than the child.  The days seem to have passed us by when mothers would interact with their children in the stroller. What a lost opportunity for language development.

How this impacts attracting the right prospects and generating more referrals is the difference you can make in your business or on the job.  Engage people and listen with the intention to understand.  Use positive feedback when listening.  Be sure you understand before responding or interjecting your ideas.

To make this even more fun, spend time when networking observing conversation.  This is especially engaging when you are at a social with your significant other or close friend.  Follow an interaction that has little or nothing to do with you. The fun begins when the results/outcomes of two parties who think they agree are actually disagreeing or taking the conversation in a different direction.   After you observe the conversation, discuss with your significant other what the two people were talking about.  See if your significant other observed the interaction as you did.

An example would be two people talking about networking.  One is a computer network analyst while the other is a business owner.  One uses electronic networking while the other uses face to face networking to grow their respective businesses.  Each uses networking in their business language, yet in each there is largely a different meaning.

Are you providing world class customer service and asking the right questions?  Personalizing your service will allow you to attract the right prospects and generate more referrals.


Gerry Rose runs INTEGRITY Networking Solutions in Oceanside, CA.  He works with people in business who want to attract the right prospects and generate more referrals.  More than 10,000 businesses have been presented the INTEGRITY Networking Solutions system in San Diego, Los Angeles, 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,

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  For more information, go to

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