June 14, 2021

Business development – “Often it’s better to find contacts who know the contacts you want to know”

Plans only work so far but records are forever.

Whoever you credit with saying it, a version of the statement, “Plans are useless, but planning is indispensable” Prussian Field Marshal Helmuth von Moltke the Elder in 1871 or General Dwight D. Eisenhower, the point is that even for, hopefully un-warlike business development you have to plan, implement and be well prepared to change your tactics quickly.

What these distinguished gentlemen meant was that plans hardly ever go according to the plan!

Life just doesn’t work that way!

“Good old contact management”

When obstacles interrupt a new business initiative, the development of an opportunity or your smooth access to worthwhile contacts, then obviously you will have to find a way around.

Often that change means looking for different contacts.

It’s really frustrating when you can’t make that direct breakthrough or contact with a target person or company, but often, it’s better to find contacts who know the contacts you want to know.

It may sound like simple, even obvious advice, but keeping fairly detailed records of your contacts over the years and those interactions can be gold dust.  Ours go back years and they mainly consist of Excel spreadsheets simply populated with the contact details of people and short notes on what the interaction related too.  

A great added bonus, sometimes, is that many folk you’ve not had reason to keep in touch with for a while may have moved employers and positions, but usually they have risen in the ranks.  

Probably now a better source of information and hopefully influence.

But only if you’ve recorded them!