Great entrepreneurs know how to make great friends. Making friends makes you money too—at least when you’re friends with the right people.
In business, this is called networking. Your potential as an entrepreneur is directly tied to who you know and, more importantly, who knows you. When you connect with the big players in your industry, you get a chance to learn from them and work with them.
There’s one little trick I use to meet highly influential people in my industry. I’ll share it in a second, but first, let me introduce you to one of the best networkers I know, my friend Randy Garn.
Randy has grown and sold 3 (!) businesses, and his current business—Skipio—is a leading text message marketing platform. That wouldn’t have been possible if he didn’t build his businesses around relationships.
Here are a few of the lessons you can learn from my mentor, Randy Garn.
Build Your Business Around These Two Things…
What do you need to do to succeed in business? It actually comes down to two simple things.
First, you need to identify the gaps in your industry. What is your industry lacking, and how can you serve your target audience by filling that gap?
Randy’s company, Skipio, does just that. He thought, “Hey, everyone is email marketing to their prospects and clients. What if instead we text them and build an even more meaningful relationship that way?”
That foresight is paying off big time for my man Randy. But there’s something else that pushes him and his businesses over the top…
He loves what he does.
When you love what you do, you’re willing to push through whatever tough times might come. That’s crucial. Even if you see an opportunity to fill a gap in your industry, if you’re lacking the passion for it then it’s gonna catch up with you.
For Randy, Skipio is an extension of what he loves most about life: building relationships with other people. That desire to connect people is what drives him to create the best possible texting software out there.
The Secret to Networking
What’s the secret to networking? Randy summarizes it in one sentence he heard from Harvey McKay.
Do as much as you can, for as many people as you can, as often as you can, without expecting anything in return.
This is the law of reciprocity at work. When you give back to others with no strings attached, the universe has a way of giving back to you. People are in your debt, and they’re there for you the next time you have to ask for a favor.
Randy introduced me to guys like Drew Manning and Troy McClain. He didn’t have to do that, but he did, and it helped me network. So when I decided to network with Andy Frisella, I bought a bunch of copies of his book. We connected and became friends through that one act of charity.
Map Out Your Future
Randy likes to write out something called a “strategy document.” It’s basically a one-page sheet that he fills with all his goals for the next 3 years.
This gives him clarity of vision. He knows exactly what he’s shooting for at all times. But here’s one nugget he shared with me recently that makes a whole lot of sense…
“If you don’t have your own goals, somebody else will use you for theirs.”
Translation: Don’t let someone else write your future for you!
This also gives you the power to say “no.” If an opportunity isn’t in line with your strategy document, then say no. That way, you save your time, energy, and resources for the stuff that will get you to your big goals.
And yes, write it out. There’s something very powerful about writing down your goals, like they almost become real when you put them on paper.
Want to hear more of Randy’s tips for success? Click here to listen to the latest Empire podcast episode—Randy brought the fire in this one!