Four-mula 4 $ucce$$
The “Four-mula 4 $ucce$$” is a four step, easy-to-follow, guaranteed way of building professional and personal credibility in a pleasurable manner. The results are increased career security, more business, better supportive relationships, and people that will become your advocates…people who will initiate action in your behalf.
The Four-mula 4 $ucce$$ requires only that you first commit to the importance of daily relations building.
To begin with, you must agree that it is important to set aside a certain portion of each day for relationship building. Simply investing less than fifteen minutes each day will assure the formula will work for you.
There are four different ways. You can do one from each category, four from one or any combination of the four. The result is always the same: more career security, more business, better relationships, more people you can call upon for a 2:00 a.m. favor, and, personal and professional fulfillment.
1. FOUR NOTES
Write four notes a day to individuals and groups, “customers” you already have. A short “thank you” will not only be appreciated, it will be passed around to friends until the note or letter frays at the edges (and, it will stand out from the masses of email). No time for snail mail? Four personalized emails as opposed to forwards work very well.
Example: Having gotten the name and their contact information from a store clerk, write “Thanks for taking the time to direct me to the right department for the answer to my question.” Internal customer example (from one Section to another) “Just a short note to say ‘thanks’ for speaking with us about speeding up our procedures with a shared check-off record keeping form. We are pleased and excited to work together with your department in developing new procedures for our new case administration flow.”
That’s all you write. One, two sentences! But, what the recipient reads is something else. The translation in her mind might be something like, “Are we lucky to have an “internal customer” like you with whom we can rely upon to help us do our job better. We are fortunate because you not only do your job well but help us do ours better and easier as well.”
Remember, a personal, positive letter or note to a customer—whether it’s directed to an internal “customer” or external “customer”—represents strength and prestige. Personal positive recognition is a powerful and special acknowledgment in this age of numbers, doing more with less, and credit usually centered on what isn’t right.
Case example…a client recently called a publishing company to inform them he was sending his photo to them that day. The person in charge was warm and friendly on the phone. He immediately hand wrote a personal note to her affirming his appreciation of their contact and how fortunate the firm was to have her as their representative. She emailed him back a week later confirming receipt of his picture and telling him: (1) his note had made her day, (2) was tacked up above her desk (is she remembering him as an inspiration), and, (3) she was the talk of the department from people seeing the note (she is now his pro bono marketing, sales, and P.R. agent; and, will likely never meet him).
Each of the four notes leaving your desk each day is positive, good news. “Thanks.” “Congratulations.” “Saw you in the news.” “For Your Information.” A scanning of the day’s paper can give you more than the necessary material to write four “4 Your Information” positive handwritten notes.
The avenues are many, long, unending. They direct the client/customer to return to you, your company, your section, for another helping of your services or for some new products you offer.
2. FOUR TELEPHONE CALLS
This is the same as the four notes…only on the phone. You will be amazed at the positive reactions. Ask anyone you know, “When was the last time you ‘out of the blue’ received a positive phone call from anyone with whom you do business?”
Most surprise calls are for a negative reason. We’re talking genuinely positive with no ulterior motive. Imagine the reaction when a debtor or debtor’s attorney receives a call and the caller identifies herself as with the Bankruptcy Court, and says, “Is this Mrs. Jones? Good morning. I’m calling to say thank you for the opportunity to be of service to you yesterday when you inquired of the status of your case. I want you to know if there is any other way we can help you in the future, I would appreciate your calling me. Here is my extension number.”
Mrs. Jones did call back to see if that person really did work there or if it was a practical joke. Really, who ever heard of the Federal Court, especially the swamped Bankruptcy Court, calling to say thank you?
This employee was later written up in the Court newsletter as the “Employee of the Month” for this and other outstanding services. (Want to achieve the exceptional success enjoyed by my many satisfied clients? Follow the Four-mula 4 $ucce$$!)
A National Speakers Association friend I was coaching wanted to make personal contact with Larry King and get on his show. We came up with and he told everyone he spoke to for two months, “By the way, if you happen to be talking to Larry King, tell him Tom J said hello. Don’t know him? Who do you know that does?”
Two weeks into the third month Tom was sitting at a head table preparing to introduce a friend who was the keynote speaker. As he struck up a conversation with the woman next to him she interrupted saying, “I don’t want to appear rude but I will be excusing myself shortly to make an important call up in my room”. Tom replied, “If you happen to be talking to Larry King, tell him Tom J. said hello.
She returned shortly to say she had told Larry King hello for him. Larry had to take an emergency call but, “He wants you to come with me when I call him again. You’re the third person this week who has told me Tom J said hello. He can’t find you in his data base and wants to speak with you.”
Tom now talks with Larry King weekly as a genuine friend and even business partner. All as a part of practicing his Four-mula 4 $ucce$$.
Brainstorm with a significant other about things you could call about: one of their family member’s achievements, an article you saw about pet adoptions, a new health cure discovery, where a sale is being held, thank you for past business, etc.. How many will you make it your “business” to come up with every day?
3. FOUR PERSONAL CONTACTS
How long does it take you to go through a box of 500 calling cards? One successful manager I recently followed up on regarding this formula now uses a new box every month!
Wherever he goes, he leaves his card. He goes to dinner, leaves a tip and his card for the waiter/waitress…with a personal note about something he thought of for them during the meal or about the service. Someone introduces him to a new person, he says their name and his name as he hands over three of his cards, saying,
“Keep one for your file and give the other two to people you care about that can benefit from my services. May I have three of yours”. He goes out of town—for whatever reason—and tells every new person he meets that if they ever come to his town—or know someone who will—well, here’s his card…”And, may I have three of yours?” “Would you like two additional ones of mine?” You can guess the rest of what is said.
A geotechnical engineer I had out to check the soil for a potential pond site was on the scene and right into the 7 foot deep trench. He immediately, upon emerging from the second hole, approached the back hoe operator, asked about his experience in excavation and exchanged cards with him. I believe each will follow up on the other. Yes, both got copies of this Four-mula 4 $ucce$$ from me as acknowledgment of their practicing the Four-mula 4 $ucce$$.
And, so, have four personal contacts received a minimum of FOUR of your calling cards today? Only two? Quick—write two notes! Or, make two more phone calls! Whip out a CC or email or bulletin board message! Hmm, you do have an automatic signature on your emails that tells what your do, do you not?)
My Father’s late brother-in-law, my Uncle Roy Boecher, State Senator Pro Tem for 21 years in Oklahoma, used to say that “Every time two people meet, a sale is made.” True…but only if the other person knows it!
A local banker played golf every Saturday for years with one of the community’s largest builders. One day the president of the bank said to the builder, “Bob, we’ve been playing golf together every Saturday for three years. How come you’ve never put any money in my bank?”
Tom answered, “How come you never asked me?”
Because habits are made early, the builder tended to think of his important friend as a “social” friend rather than his “banker” friend. And that is really what value added customer contact is all about: making a friendly sale.
Do you know someone in direct sales who is fearful of “cold calls”? Tell them about and pass along a copy of this Four-mula 4 $ucce$$ and they’ll never make another “cold” call again. This is because of the assistance they can’t help but get from the outstanding relationship building they have done by attending to any three of the other four parts of the Four-mula 4 $uccess. And, they are comfortably earning the right to ask their supporters and advocates, “Who Do You Know Who Has A Problem With?”, “Would Benefit From My___?”.
The greeting, the talking to, and the contacting of a minimum number of people every day to make four new sales is not difficult. Practicing the four-mula 4 $ucce$$ is a guaranteed system for developing effortless introductions/referrals.
The entire purpose of the Four-mula 4 $ucce$$ is to reinforce, build and expand a network of people close enough to you, so that when you want or need something—information, a favor, some help in business, a recommendation, or just a friend—yes, even at 2:00 a.m., you’ll already have access to them. Many of the people in my seminars include “Making new friends” as a goal. Or, they put it this way: “Keep in better touch with the people, my “Advocates”, who are important to me.” This Four-mula 4 $ucce$$ practice will do all of those things, plus it will help you tie-in together those supportive contacts who are or will be important to you.
Notes: Do you text, send emails from your smart phone, or travel with a lap top computer? You still must have some small type of stationery, note pads, note paper/post-it pads, or a “personally unique” post card with you at all times. Why the emphasis on “at all times”? Because it’s during those odd moments—while you’re waiting or being kept waiting (both unexpected)–that you use the time to leverage the Four-mula to “keep in touch.”
The post card technique is particularly good, especially for personal friends, an associate or external customer. It keeps you in touch in a way other people never think of—because it’s so simple. All you need are your cards, addresses, postage stamps (you could pre-address and have stamps already on them), and a pen, and you have solved the “Thinking of You” problem. Sometimes you can’t telephone everybody you think about. You can’t visit everybody you like (wouldn’t that be fun?), but you can write three or four line notes.
Consider the effect of writing four notes a day. If you are working 250 days a year, that is 1,000 extra contacts, “second sales calls” as one executive described the notes, spreading out into your business and personal world! And, you are now standing out from the deluge of emails.
And what is the difference between the Business and Personal Category of friends? Isn’t it length of time, or the chemistry created between two people, or a closeness that results from more intimate contact? With four notes a day you can create friendships from business, Simply by taking the ninety seconds necessary to write down a thought, two sentences that say to someone you know: “I was thinking about you—and I think enough about you as a friend to take the time to tell you about something I think would work for you.”
There may be some times you are stuck about a For Your Information subject. Solution; email or carry copies of this Four-mula 4 $ucce$$ to mail to people. We all know at least a dozen people who could benefit from using this Four-mula 4 $ucce$$.
Phone calls: These are made impulsively. It is recognized you are busy. You are managing your time well. You have a list of Things For Today, but in between there are flashes, a name that appears on the page of a phone index, a familiar name in you computer directory or your Rolodex file while you are looking for someone else. Flash equals Action. Make a call right then. Fast!
When you do call, tell the truth: “I was going through my file, saw your name, and said to myself, “It’s been too long since I called you, so I dialed your number. What are your news and goods?” You will be amazed at the response.
Most people are startled and answer, “You must have ESP! I was thinking of you just the other day,’ or, “I’ll tell you something funny. Wednesday, no it was Tuesday, one of the guys called me about you, and I told him I’d have to give you a call. Gee, I’m glad you called…” You Called. That’s the difference.
Keep your calls short. Two short calls are better than one long one.
Isn’t it funny how many people you call impulsively were “just about to get in touch with you”? You become the source by using this impulsive technique. You are generating the communication, and you are building your network of people.
Personal contacts: Most of us do not sufficiently access the people we know for business purposes. Does everyone who knows you really know what you do for a living? Does the check-out clerk at the grocery store you have been going to for years know you well enough to immediately call you when they or one of their friends need the services you render? Could that individual connect you with the manager, owner, corporate headquarters, a banker source, pharmacy source??? How can they support you if they don’t know you?
There is a key word in all communications that distinguishes one from the many: Individuality. It is the key to recognition. “Oh yes, he is the one to consult with on that problem.” How do you build that identity, the “authority”, the Recognition?
You build that Recognition by making sure the people you know socially as well as in business know what makes you unique. One of those attributes is your consummate presence and follow-up.
You still have to ask for the order, but now can easily do so at least four times a day of a new contact…someone you have been in contact with introduced you to or referred you to.
Four a day! You do not have to do every one every day. If you take just one category you are far ahead of the average person If you do more than one category (250 days X 8 contacts per day = 2000 extra customer goodwill “meetings” per year), you will soon have so much recognition your colleagues will wonder, “How come she gets all the breaks?”
The spelling is the secret “formula”…Four-mula 4 $ucce$$
Inspired by and kudos to Ray Considine, co- author with Murray Raphel, of The Great Brain Robbery, National Speakers Association colleagues.