• Keep Building Contacts

    Keep Building Contacts

    Why do I network at the same places while also reaching out to those I rarely see anymore?

    Because that's how business finds you. It may not be immediate. It may be months or even years since your first contact. But if you keep yourself in mind, there are payoffs.

    I was reminded of that as I finished a draft report for the Fairfax County Small Business Commission. The report was the culmination of a Strategic Plan Retreat I facilitated for the commission the week prior. The commission chair had asked me to facilitate the retreat on short notice after the facilitator they had lined up wasn't able to commit.

    Commission Chairman John Pellegrin and I have known each other a number of years. We met at a Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce event and he subsequently became my business attorney. I have presented at his Rotary Club. He knows my abilities and when he had a need, my name came to mind.

    Shortly after I transmitted the report to the commissioners, I received an email from a former Capitol Hill colleague who now works for a healthcare association, inquiring about my availability and interest in an editing project. I won't mention her name or the association because I don't want to influence her decision either way, but I had reached out to her shortly after we both had left the Hill and she was employed by another association. I haven't been in contact with her since, though we're Facebook buds and occasionally like or comment on each other's posts.

    I may or may not land that contract, but the point is to keep up with your connections. You never know when they may need your skills. Make sure it's your name that pops up when they do.

    Author, speaker, writer and editor Tom Pfeifer is the managing partner and chief strategist for Consistent Voice Communications, LLC.

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