Let’s assume you are a commercial lender at a bank or credit union. Your job is to search for businesses that need your services. And you’ve spent months, probably years, building a network of professional contacts to aid you in this effort.
Ideally, anyway, that’s what’s supposed to happen. There’s nothing better than a professional network for professional business development.
Sometimes you stay in touch with people in your network just to see how they have been. Or you may congratulate them on a new position. Some of you may use an online system that prompts you to endorse one of the people in your network. It’s great to recognize those you know!
Now, what if you contact someone in your professional network to seek their advice. Maybe you ask them for someone they may know who could help you. Boldly, some may even ask for a sales lead.
How would you respond to such a request? Would you respond at all?
A good member of your professional network will talk with you, return phone calls and emails. They’ll truly be interested in your questions and what you’re doing.
When you add people to your network it’s a good idea to have some connection with them; you may have met them at a business meeting, they could have been a former colleague, maybe they were a neighbor. Once you have this connection, if they reach out to you the best practice is to respond.
Otherwise, what are they to think of their connection with you?