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Networking 101 – The Importance of Trust

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I was reminded again yesterday about how trust is such an important factor in Networking and referrals.

You see my friend (let’s call her Jill) met me for lunch and was telling me about this huge opportunity that has presented itself to her. There is this chap (let’s call him John) who heads up a multi million Rand organisation who is looking for a particular product to brand as a corporate gift for his clients.

Jill had a meeting with him on an unrelated issue and he mentioned this corporate gift idea that he had and said that no-one had gotten back to him and that in fact he had had little response from anyone. How bizarre is that? The man wants to give someone huge amounts of money and/or business and no-one appears to wants the business!

Well now Jill, who is in a totally unrelated type of business, really does not know how to pass up on a good deal and she asks him if she could perhaps assist him and John gives her 24 hours to get back to him with a proposal. 24 hours people, in a field that she knows nothing about!

You would think that Jill’s initial reaction would be one of “Panic! I have no idea where to even begin to find what he needs” – well, in a way you could be right but more importantly you are most definitely wrong.

Here’s the thing – Jill may not know much about the product that she had 24 hours in which to come up with, but Jill knows me and Jill knows that I know lots of people. So Jill, who loves to work ‘smart’ rather than ‘hard’ called me!

So here is what happened – I have connected Jill with several people in my database, one in particular being (let’s call her Jane). Jill and Jane have never met one another, but because I referred both of them, one to the other, they are now doing business and John is a happy man. My contacts know and trust me and they also know how to deliver. The result is . . . . well let’s jus say that Jill owes me several large whiskeys!

Here are two people, who have yet to meet one another, who are doing hundreds of thousands of Rands worth of business because they both know and trust me.

Now that . . . is the Power of Networking!