About 10 years ago my husband worked with Toronto-based Strategic Coach, a firm run by Dan Sullivan. Dan and his staff worked with entrepreneurs on issues ranging from “strategy creation” to “work/life balance” and from “developing intellectual capital” to “creating and implementing exit strategies.” Because my husband would share the lessons, I felt like I was learning right along with him. One of the lessons that stuck with me was what Dan calls “The Referability Habits.”
If you stop and think about any success that you have experienced, it is because of a relationship. You do not just create the success by yourself. I see this everyday in myself and my clients. And, if you think about it, your most powerful testimonial is “word of mouth.” That’s your best customers wanting to introduce others to you, so that you can help them. Why do they do this? It is not just because you do a good job. According to Dan, you have developed four key habits. If you have these four habits, you will get referrals. Here they are.
1. Show up on time. How many of us making punctuality a priority? I believe that when we are late, we are saying that our time is more important than the person we are meeting with. It is rude behavior, and I doubt any of us wants to be perceived as rude. Allow yourself time to be on time, maybe even a bit early.
2. Do What You Say. This is all about commitment. Your word is your word. Do not over commit, keep a schedule so you know what you committed to, and follow-through. And this applies to everyone in your life and business, even yourself.
3. Finish What You Start. Do you ever get excited about a project and then get sidetracked and don’t finish it? Keep at it until it is fully done. To do this, you have to know what the finish looks like, so spend time figuring that out and follow through until you reach the goal.
4. Say “please” and “thank you.” We learned this common courtesy early on as children. I know I learned this from my parents. I still remember it being reinforced as the two little magic words from Captain Kangaroo. Doesn’t it make you feel good when you hear those words? It makes others feel good to hear them.
What do the four rules have in common? They show respect and appreciation for the other person. They let you build a level of trust and you become a valuable resource for the other person. And, it makes you a referable person. These are great every-day strategies to incorporate into your life.
Do you have others you might like to add?