The Biggest Mistake I Made as an Entrepreneur

One of the biggest mistakes you can make as an entrepreneur is not seeing the big picture. That’s not an easy thing to do when you are trying to start up a business. Not easy, but a must, as you need to have a vision for the future. For me it was not connecting with people who I felt did not fit my model. Five years down the road my model changed and those people I did not bother to connect with I now wanted to know. Those were wasted opportunities. Not connecting with people you don’t think you will do business with has another downside. Maybe they won’t be clients/customers, but they may know someone who can use your services!

So, instead of focusing on who can help your business today and only connecting with those people, focus on the big picture. Be open to everyone and watch your business 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

You Are Not My Client

Kevin Willett says sometimes the money is not worth the headache

As business owners we obviously want as many clients as possible. But what happens if a client is not right for your business? Well, you have to be honest with yourself and the client. This is a hard thing to do. It is unnatural to turn away business. Honesty is best for all involved.

Let me give you an example. I run a networking group. If you want to join the group and be successful, I suggest we do video interviews, you attend a networking event, I promote you on social media, we pass referrals to one another. If you want to join my group but don’t want to do any of the above, then I don’t think the group will work for you. If this is the case, I am honest and tell you that. I don’t want you to be a part of my business and end up frustrated when the results are not what you desired. I don’t want to end up frustrated because I can’t help you.

We have all done it, taken on clients that are not a fit. Know what your strengths are, know who a good match for you will be and both you and the client will be much happier. Taking on clients just for the money can hurt your business in the long run. You may get a reputation as not providing results and business will decline. Focus on the people who are a match and you and the client will be happier. Happier client equal more referrals which leads to business growth!

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

Please Stop Doing This

Kevin Willett says a broader focus can lead to bigger things

Business focus is an important aspect of being successful. Unfortunately, a lot of times I see people with a business focus that is too narrow. Everyday, I am online trying to connect to people. If someone watches/likes/shares a video of mine, I make sure to send a message and thank them. If I notice someone has viewed a profile or page of mine, I try to connect and see how I can help them. I am always inviting people to my networking events. You would not believe the number of times I get a response back saying they are not interested in networking or talking with other people unless they need their services. This focus on selling your services only is too narrow and not an easy path to growth. It’s all about business relationships in the end. We do not do business with people we do not know, like or trust. Building relationships can take time. Your focus needs to broaden and encompass that. The more relationships you take the time to build, the more referrals you will get and the bigger your business will grow. Aren’t referrals a lot easier than cold calling for sales?

So please stop keeping your focus on potential clients only. You are missing so many opportunities. Expand your focus and take the time to build relationships through networking and gaining referral partners. Make yourself a resource to others as well and your name will be the first to come up when someone is looking for your services.

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

Goals and Dreams

Kevin Willett says when you set goals and take action, your dreams can come true

It’s that time of year again where we need to figure out what the next year will have in store for ourselves and our businesses. There are goals that we set that we will try hard to hit. There are dreams of how we want the next year to look like. How do we get there? It starts with a plan. I have a big goal for the upcoming year. To reach this goal I will have to invest some extra money, step outside my comfort zone, and put in a lot of extra effort. There is no guarantee that these steps will make my goal reachable, which can be a scary thought, but I am going to follow the plan I have laid out and see what happens. If I am successful, my dream, or vision of how I want my business to look, will be that much closer.

What are your dreams and goals? Do not be afraid to chase them. Do the research, make a plan and go for it. Seek help when you need it. Keep moving forward.

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 Bigger The Risk…

Kevin Willett says being a good salesman includes selling yourself

We need to take risks as entrepreneurs. The bigger the risk, the harder the decision and the more time it will take to make it. For example, if something is low cost and may or may not work for you, would you try it? You probably would because the risk was low. Quick decision. If something were of a higher cost, you would probably take more time, think of the pluses and minuses, weigh your options against your finances and more.

Okay, now switch sides. You are trying to sell your services; they are costly, and you are getting frustrated with slow turn around. Think about who you are selling to. You may feel the cost of your services is a steal, low risk investment. That may not be how your potential client sees it. The value of money is different for everyone. How do you make it worth it for the client? You have to sell yourself as well. Telling someone about all the great things you can do for them is nice, but they also have to feel comfortable with you. It goes back to the Know, Like and Trust I have tried to educate you on so many times in prior blogs. Sales may be what grows your business, and you feel that it your main job, but making potential clients comfortable with you and your product, giving them space and understanding their situation, building the relationship is more important. Do not get frustrated, do not get angry. Enjoy the journey. In the end you’ll have a happy client and new friend.

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

Don’t Hate Me

Kevin Willett says your actions should override your reactions

In business we gain and lose customers all the time. There are several reasons why this may happen. Things change and it is hard not to take it personally when someone no longer wants to or chooses not to do business with you. I have had people in my networking group who leave to try other groups. Sometimes they come back and sometimes they don’t. I don’t take this personally. Many times, they apologize and say, “I hope you don’t hate me now”. Folks, this is business and that’s the way it is. Let me give you another example. If you know multiple realtors and decide to list your home for sale, you can only have one listing agent. For those that don’t get the listing, it is not personal. You cannot take it that way. How you respond to not being chosen is important. Feeling rejected or acting bitter is not the way to go. Handling the situation professionally allows you to keep the relationship going, leading to potential opportunities down the road.

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’re So Vain

Kevin Willett says ditch the vanity and take pride in yourself instead

2020 has been a crazy year. I am hearing a lot of stories about people upping their fitness routines with home gyms and workouts to try and keep some sanity in their day. I have heard the opposite stories from friends who are packing on the pounds and not able to get a good routine going. These are the friends I am concerned about. Not because of their eating habits but because of their networking habits. Many people I know have stopped networking. The excuses I am hearing “I don’t look good on Zoom” “I have gained weight” “I don’t want to put my makeup on for one call”. Wow!

Nobody documents themselves daily as much as I do. I post a lot of pictures; I do Facebook Live videos every day. I’ll admit I am one of the ones who has lost weight during the pandemic. So, I know how the gainers feel because when I look back on older videos and pictures, I can’t believe it. We all want to present our best selves to potential clients. Think about this though, if you don’t lose weight does that mean you are never going to network again?  If I had waited until I lost 25 or 30 pounds, there would be no New England B2B or Friends of Kevin right now. You cannot afford to wait to try and grow your business. The most important thing is not how you look on a Zoom call it’s how you portray yourself and your business. Impress people with your intelligence and passion for what you do.

Makeup or no makeup, comb your hair, put on a clean shirt and network!

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

Never Forget Your Roots

Kevin Willet says your roots are what made you strong

I grew up in a neighborhood that had large families, not a lot of income and diverse ethnicities. I am super proud of that. While people from more affluent neighborhoods may have looked down on it, my neighborhood was awesome. I got to grow up with people with backgrounds from all over the world! Today, in my business, I am still interacting with people with diverse backgrounds. Networking is an important part of everyone’s business no matter the revenue, location or the clients that are sought.

We as business owners must be careful though. Once you have paid your dues and grown your business, remember where you started. It is easy to forget the client that gave you the small jobs to help you get started when now you are doing much larger jobs for bigger clients. Don’t forget those people. When they call, make sure you take care of them. You are not too important for the smaller jobs ever. Those people and those jobs are what made you and your business who you are today. Stay humble, stay thankful, never forget your roots.

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

What’s In It For Me?

Kevin Willett says by making your business stand out, you will help it to grow

Running several networking events a month, I send out a lot of invitations for people to attend. Usually I get a yes or no response and keep moving forward. A few months ago I received a response that made me stop and think. A gentleman returned my email invitation saying he was not interested because I did a lousy job of explaining what was in it for him, why should he attend. At first, I was taken aback. Then I thought, you know what, he is right. I saw that he owned a business, I thought he would be a good fit for an event and I sent him the invitation. I did not think about why he should want to attend, why my event would be different from others he was invited to.

Most of us when we hear “what’s in it for me” we think of this as a negative statement. As business owners we have to think this way sometimes in order maximize our time listening to pitches. If you want to do business with me but cannot tell me how this will help me, I really don’t want to spend time listening or meeting with you. We have to be able to explain how our business stands out in order to attract new customers and continue to grow. Don’t be afraid to talk yourself and your business up! You are not generic, you are unique, so let potential clients know that

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

Once Is Never Enough

Kevin Willett says don’t wait until you need a referral, a customer or more business to meet with someone a second time.

When you are thinking about whether to attend a networking event or use your time elsewhere, do not make your decision solely on who will be at the event. Yes that is an important piece to consider, as I have said before, you need to present to the right audience, but you’d be amazed at the amount of people who turn down and event because they have met somebody attending  one other time.  Once is never enough. Do you think because you met someone once that they will remember everything about you and your business? I have had people asked me about event attendees even after attending multiple events with that person. ‘Hey Kev, who was that guy that did roofs at your last event? ‘Hey Kev, lady who does real estate for southern NH, I know her first name but can’t remember her last” and on and on. I have spoken and written many times about getting to know, like and trust. This takes time! Relationships need to be built, follow up needs to be done, and becoming comfortable with referrals to and from needs to happen.This is not the networking guy trying to get you to go to multiple events he is hosting, LOL. This is the networking guy trying to help you. Let me ask you this: Think about and event you have been to in the past. Do you remember everyone who was there and what they do? Probably not.

Next time you are thinking about skipping an event because you talked to someone once already, think again.

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