Hi Kevin!

Kevin Willett wants to know where you met for the first time.

Three times in the last two weeks I have been in an awkward situation. While I was out and about, someone has come up to me and enthusiastically greeted me “Hi Kevin! How are you doing?” I had no idea who these people were. One lady in particular, was disappointed I didn’t remember her. In my defense, I hadn’t seen her in ten years. I’m supposed to know everybody because I’m the Networking Guy right? Well, if you haven’t been to an event in ten years, I should get a pass. Another guy said hi to me and I asked him to refresh my memory as to how we met? He said we had never met, he just saw my picture in the paper recently. I think I get a pass on that one too. But seriously if you are out and approach somebody you know, if they look puzzled, help them out. Let them know how you know each other! Don’t be offended. It’s not personal. It could be the re-start of a great friendship!

Watch my YouTube Channel  for more on this and other Business Networking Tips

Kevin Willett is the Author of One Connection How you can grow your business  (and change the world) one connection at a time. The business networking book is available on Amazon. Purchase One Connection on Amazon

Kevin is also the CEO of the Friends of Kevin Networking Group  and the New England B2B Networking Group. Please connect with him on social media to hear about his upcoming business networking events

You Made The Connection, Now What?

Kevin Willett says finding a common bond and following up are more effective than just being seen.

Friends often tell me they try and get out to as many events as possible, meet as many people as possible, but in the end are not seeing results. The challenge is going from seeing people in a social environment to actually sitting down with them at some point and talking business. We hear all the time we have to “get out there” “put yourself out there” “be seen” this will get you business. Hmmm, I think we are confusing being busy with being productive. Going out to these events may be fun, but at the end of the day, we need to get business done.

Another issue my Friends find is too many people of the same job description going to the same events. When I was in Banking, we went to a lot of events. Unfortunately, so did all the other bankers in town. Now that I run my own business, I have decided to only go to events that I am passionate about, that I may have an interest in beyond finding business and to find connections with similar interests as me. I don’t go just to go and be seen anymore. Of course, for me, it’s a little different since I am a Professional Networker, but for you, my advice is this: Think of the best use of your time, go to events that you really have an interest in, Think about who at the event may be a good connection for you. Once you have done this and made that initial connection, take the next step. Reach out, set up a coffee meeting and talk about how you can work together. Finding a common bond and following up are more effective than just being seen. Once again the old saying of quality over quantity rings true.

Watch my YouTube Channel  for more on this and other Business Networking Tips

Kevin Willett is the Author of One Connection How you can grow your business  (and change the world) one connection at a time. The business networking book is available on Amazon. Purchase One Connection on Amazon

Kevin is also the CEO of the Friends of Kevin Networking Group  and the New England B2B Networking Group. Please connect with him on social media to hear about his upcoming business networking events

Smile And Say You’re Welcome

Kevin Willett says keep it two sided and it will strengthen the relationship.

I have a hard time accepting compliments. I honestly feel it is my job to help people. So, when I receive a compliment, I respond with the typical “no worries” “no big deal” “no problem”. I don’t like those responses. They make it sound like I am doing you a favor. When I am helping someone, I feel it is more of a privilege than a favor. So, a better response to your compliment or thanks would be “I am happy to help. It feels great to help a friend” I want to make people feel like they are helping me as much as I am helping them. When you trust me enough to help you solve something or work through a business issue, it really does make me feel good. Sometimes those common responses can feel dismissive and make the other person feel like they were bothering you. Keep it two sided and it will strengthen the relationship.

Watch my YouTube Channel  for more on this and other Business Networking Tips

Kevin Willett is the Author of One Connection How you can grow your business  (and change the world) one connection at a time. The business networking book is available on Amazon. Purchase One Connection on Amazon

Kevin is also the CEO of the Friends of Kevin Networking Group  and the New England B2B Networking Group. Please connect with him on social media to hear about his upcoming business networking events

The Advantage of Cancelled Appointments

Kevin Willett agrees that when opportunity knocks, you should answer the door

I got up today and checked my calendar for the days’ appointments, ready to confirm and get the day going. My very first one cancelled. I must admit, this threw me off. My day was planned, it was a breakfast meeting, now what? What am I going to have for breakfast now? What do I do with myself until the next appointment? You wouldn’t mind, but I had a whole list of things I needed to get done, so my mind should have automatically gone to the first thing on the list and started there. This should be thought of as an opportunity!

We can spend a lot of our day wasting time. Waiting for a call, waiting for an appointment to show up, etc. What are we doing while we are waiting? Scrolling our phones, looking at facebook, maybe playing a game. Let’s use this time to be more productive. OK, I am not suggesting that we don’t take a few minutes to ourselves throughout the day. We all need that. But, when we add up all the time between things, it can be quite substantial! Let’s try to utilize some of that time better. Maybe you can make your workday shorter by doing that. Maybe that will be one less task that spills over into your weekend.

The next time you find yourself waiting or with a cancelled appointment, try and fill that gap productively.

Watch my YouTube Channel  for more on this and other Business Networking Tips

Kevin Willett is the Author of One Connection How you can grow your business  (and change the world) one connection at a time. The business networking book is available on Amazon. Purchase One Connection on Amazon

Kevin is also the CEO of the Friends of Kevin Networking Group  and the New England B2B Networking Group. Please connect with him on social media to hear about his upcoming business networking events

Why Do we Make Things So Hard?

Kevin Willett says you’ll be happier making goals realistically rather than emotionally

The new year is a time we make resolutions, we look forward to great things happening, we have dreams of what could be. It’s also a time where we make plans for our business, set goals and yeah, dream of what could be.

I was talking to a Friend of mine who said his goal this year was to 4X his business. OK, what does that mean. Did he have an increase last year and was ready for another big one? He actually had an off year. Good goal, but coming from a down year it seems a bit challenging. So, I asked what his plan was to achieve this goal. He said he would work smarter, not harder. I am not a fan of buzz words or catch phrases. What does this mean? What are the actual steps you are going to take to 4X your business? He did not know.

When we set goals and make them too big, we are making it harder on ourselves. Then, when we don’t achieve a goal or are not as successful as we hoped, we become angry, disillusioned and tend to give up. Let’s make our goals personally and professionally more realistic. If you were in my Friend’s shoes and you didn’t 4X your business, maybe you only 2x it, would you be happy? I would! All accomplishments are great, no matter how big or small. However, with small goals, you can reach more often, you’ll be happier and more productive. You’ll find your confidence, momentum, and focus will increase.  In the end, proper planning is key.

Watch my YouTube Channel  for more on this and other Business Networking Tips

Kevin Willett is the Author of One Connection How you can grow your business  (and change the world) one connection at a time. The business networking book is available on Amazon. Purchase One Connection on Amazon

Kevin is also the CEO of the Friends of Kevin Networking Group  and the New England B2B Networking Group. Please connect with him on social media to hear about his upcoming business networking events

It’s OK to Have Fun

Kevin Willett says everybody should have a little fun at work

I always talk about the importance of being careful about what you post on social media. Try and stay away from politics, angry rants etc. But sometimes, it’s OK to have a little fun in your posts. The other day I posted a picture of a near empty tin of cookies asking if anyone wanted to refill the tin for me. This post got mixed reactions from people who know, and don’t know about my love of cookies, from ‘dude are you seriously asking people to make you cookies?’ to ‘that post is hilarious!’ The best and most surprising responses were from people I haven’t heard from in a while. Connections responding with a chuckle saying ‘I haven’t talked to you lately, and I happen to be making cookies for the holiday, let’s meet up!’  This was a joking silly post, but it gave me a chance to re-connect with people.  Sometimes when we let a little humor into our professional persona, people can relate to us better. Again, we don’t want to post anything that may harm our brand but being relatable can only help. So, have a little fun occasionally, you may be surprised with the results.

Watch my YouTube Channel  for more on this and other Business Networking Tips

Kevin Willett is the Author of One Connection How you can grow your business  (and change the world) one connection at a time. The business networking book is available on Amazon. Purchase One Connection on Amazon

Kevin is also the CEO of the Friends of Kevin Networking Group  and the New England B2B Networking Group. Please connect with him on social media to hear about his upcoming business networking events

Why Not Now

Kevin Willett says time is something we should not waste

It seems like the last month or two of the year people are making plans for themselves and their business and then waiting for the New Year to execute those plans. I know, everyone loves to make their New Years Resolutions, and we all look forward to the “clean slate” and “fresh start”. My question is why? Why wait? Why not start now? Doesn’t tomorrow offer a clean slate and a fresh start? By putting your goals on hold until the page in a calendar is turned, be that New Years, Spring or whatever, you could be missing out on opportunity. You could be closer to your goal if you start right now. So, why not now? What are you waiting for?

Watch my YouTube Channel  for more on this and other Business Networking Tips

Kevin Willett is the Author of One Connection How you can grow your business  (and change the world) one connection at a time. The business networking book is available on Amazon. Purchase One Connection on Amazon

Kevin is also the CEO of the Friends of Kevin Networking Group  and the New England B2B Networking Group. Please connect with him on social media to hear about his upcoming business networking events

Who Should I Connect With?

Kevin Willett says to make connections with not only the present but the future in mind.

The short answer to this question is everyone. Let me tell you about my experiences. I was working as CFO of a bank many years ago and as social media grew, my connections increased. The problem, I was only connecting with people in the banking industry. Fast Forward to me starting my own business, The Friends of Kevin Networking Group. My connections now changed, and I was focusing on connecting with small business, non-profits etc, skipping people who did not fit the business to consumer requests I was getting. Soon I was getting a lot of inquiries into why I did not service the B2B market. Hmmm, OK, now New England B2B Networking Group was born and the people I did not think I should connect with were all now potential new clients. I wish I had made all those connections through all those years. I let my focus on one sector hold me back. The bottom line is you never know where your business will take you. Be ready, be open to all connections and be prepared to grow.

Watch my YouTube Channel  for more on this and other Business Networking Tips

Kevin Willett is the Author of One Connection How you can grow your business  (and change the world) one connection at a time. The business networking book is available on Amazon. Purchase One Connection on Amazon

Kevin is also the CEO of the Friends of Kevin Networking Group  and the New England B2B Networking Group. Please connect with him on social media to hear about his upcoming business networking events

Catch Me If You Can

Kevin Willett says the more you make people chase you, the less business you get done

Do you remember this game as a child? Well, I am trying to stop playing now that I am an adult. I have people who reach out to me because they are interested in getting involved in my networking group. They will say can you call me on Tuesday at 2pm. Of course, when you call, they are not available. They will then ask you to call them on Friday at 10am and again they don’t answer.

When this happens, I send them my number and ask them to reach out to me when they have time. I have learned that when I must chase people, I am usually sad when I catch them because they end up being lousy clients. My membership model works best for people who have time to come to events and take advantage of the perks of memberships. If you are lackadaisical about returning getting back to people, you probably won’t show up for events you’ve signed up for or take an interest in the other benefits of the group.

The other thing I learned is when I must chase people to be a client, they often struggle with focus and time management and they will message me asking me to drop everything and help them because they need me to promote them today. Now their failures are put on my shoulders even though I was not the procrastinator.

If you are chasing clients, maybe you should re-evaluate if this is worth your effort. If you are the person constantly saying you are interested, but then forever unavailable, how can anyone do business with you when you show a MEH attitude? Maybe certain matches are just not meant to be made.

Watch my YouTube Channel  for more on this and other Business Networking Tips

Kevin Willett is the Author of One Connection How you can grow your business  (and change the world) one connection at a time. The business networking book is available on Amazon. Purchase One Connection on Amazon

Kevin is also the CEO of the Friends of Kevin Networking Group  and the New England B2B Networking Group. Please connect with him on social media to hear about his upcoming business networking events

1st Rule of Networking

Kevin Willett says this rule is the most important

The first rule of Networking is to always return phone calls and emails. Plain and simple. I have said it before, we are all busy, but should never be too busy for business. I had a friend recently who needed a service urgently. They called their contact and never got a call back. The contact claimed they meant to call, and it fell through the cracks. Now that person is out a source of revenue & a referral source, thus hurting their business.

How long does it take to reply to a text? To an Email? 30 seconds maybe? Even if you are super busy, you have thirty seconds to respond to someone and tell them that. If you cannot help someone out yourself, maybe go the extra mile and suggest someone else they can call. The client will respect you for that and it boosts your reputation and brand because you are putting your client ahead of yourself. If you are afraid you will lose business by referring them to someone else, you’d be surprised. Clients value your honesty and will still make you their first choice because of that. Not calling them back will cost you a lot more.

Watch my YouTube Channel  for more on this and other Business Networking Tips

Kevin Willett is the Author of One Connection How you can grow your business  (and change the world) one connection at a time. The business networking book is available on Amazon. Purchase One Connection on Amazon

Kevin is also the CEO of the Friends of Kevin Networking Group  and the New England B2B Networking Group. Please connect with him on social media to hear about his upcoming business networking events