Good Morning all.
Last week I had the privilege to be included in a private webinar hosted my two of my heroes Scott Dinsmore of Live Your Legend and Corbett Barr of ThinkTraffic. By the way if you haven’t yet subscribed to these blogs then, do it! The topic of the webinar was heavily centred around making connections that matter, something Scott is infectiously passionate about. I have decided to share the wisdom I gained from this webinar with you, in the form of an in-formal summary/review.
The whole webinar was based around Scott’s “12 Uncommon Rules of Making Genuine World-Changing Connections”. If i’m honest I actually entered the talk thinking this could well be a stereotypical “this is how you should give out your business card” kind of webinar. How wrong I was!!
“You are the average of the five people you spend most of your time with” – Jim Rohn
This is one of the founding quotes that encompasses Scott’s philosophy that your success is heavily linked to the success of the people you spend your time with. And its very true, when I look around my own connections and consider the people I spend my time with I can contribute a great amount of my ambitions, thoughts and motivation to them. I know that my girlfriend makes me a lot more responsible for instance, I know that my cousin is one person that can keep me on task when my focus wonders. Equally so, I know that there are people in my life that hold me back, that limit my ambitions, that stop me from achieving. Take a moment to sit down and actually write down the 5 people that you spend most of your time with, then analyse how they affect your life, your mentality. You may be surprised by the results. Now, i’m no one to suggest no longer being friends with the people that negatively affect your life, ambitions and mentality, but just by being more aware of the way that they influence you, you should be able to counter-act it, or least ignore these negative influences.
The 12 Rules
1) Cultivate the Right Mindset and Reframe Friends - When looking to connect with a new person, or make an introduction. Your mindset needs to be right if you want the best chance to make a positive first impression. Instead of thinking how can this person help me, and thinking of how you can best propose they help you, think to yourself, ‘how can I add value to this persons life’. By adding value to their life, even in the simplest way (Scott emplyed this tactic when he met Leo Babauta, and because Leo had just moved into town, Scott gave him a list of the best restaurants around). Then once you have added this value it will mean that person is even more inclined to do By doing this, it means you are more likely to build a great connection rather than being a fleeting thought in that persons day.
“You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.” – Dale Carnegie
2) Create a relationship roadmap & discover who you already know.
I touched on the topic of considering who brings you down and negatively affects your mindset earlier in this post. But for me the most important part of this rule was to think about who you already know that can help you achieve goals. Odds are that you already know someone that could personally help you or they will be able to make an introduction to one of their friends that can. LinkedIn shows this point best, nearly every time I search for someone I want to connect with, it turns out that I already know someone that knows that person and could help me make a meaningful connection with them.
3) Find your story and lead with passion.
This is one of the most important rules in my opinion, it applies to every aspect of life. You will know yourself that its much more fun to connect and chat with upbeat and positive people so its uber important to be positive and upbeat when you are looking to connect with an important people. One of Scott’s concepts was that of Personal Branding, and I whole heartedly agree that its so important to brand yourself as someone that people want to connect with. You should aim to be the person that lifts a room, that people look to, when they want a positive lift. This concept of Personal Branding extends to social media, its so important that when someone checks you out on Twitter, and then on Facebook that they don’t see two different people.
4) The power of introverts and how shy people can talk to anyone.
You may think that you are too shy, not out-going enough to make introductions to powerful and successful people, wrong. Some of the most powerful people are introverts. It doesn’t take long reading Zen Habits to see that Leo Babauta is very introvert for instance, yet every week he is connecting and sharing his thoughts with hundreds of thousands of people. In fact being an introvert is extremely powerful, it gives you the golden skill of listening. You will all know someone who you would say still could be heard in a herd of elephants, but the problem is that when you are too busy shouting what you think people want to hear, you can’t hear them tell you what they actually want to hear. By being an introvert, by listening you can show you are interested in others (even if you aren’t!).
5) The 3 second rule.
This was the first rule that Scott went into some of the ‘mechanical’ details on how to meet and connect with people. The 3 second rule was first used as a technique to pick up girls in the book ‘The Game‘. Now Scott wasn’t giving pick up tricks but merely adapting the rule to use to meet anyone, not just attractive members of the opposite sex, as the name suggests, this rule states that when you see someone that you want to meet or connect with, then you have 3 seconds to walk up to them and make an introduction. Why 3 seconds? Because any longer and you will either find an excuse not to make the introduction, or if applied to trying to pick up girls, risk becoming the creepy guys that spends just that bit too long staring at the object of their affection.
6) Find unique ways to help everyone, even the uber successful.
I don’t know anyone who doesn’t get slightly nervous when they are about to make an introduction to someone new, its something that everyone feels to some extent. This has been well documented as the feel of rejection, but these nerves get even stronger if the person that you are approaching is uber successful because us mere mortals naturally may think that we don’t have anything of value to offer someone who’s been there and done it all. Wrong. Everyone of us in the world has unique qualities, unique skills that nobody else on the planet has, all you have to do is find what your strengths are and how best to use them to add value to someone else’s life. As Scott demonstrated, this doesn’t have to be something ground-breaking either, it can just be as simple that you know more about something than someone else, like when Scott gave Leo Babauta a list of local restaurants. It could be that you are extremely good at analysing situations so could use that to write a review about someone’s webinar.. cough cough.. Basically, everyone is an expert and this 6th rule is all about believing in yourself enough to know what it is you are an expert in.
7) Become instantly memorable.
Once you have make a first impression, maybe had a short chat with the person you are looking to connect with and possibly got their contact details. Then its imperative that you follow up on this, that you make that person remember you. Also make sure you don’t leave it a week before doing so, my personal rule would be to follow up within 48 hours. This is what will make you stand out from 99% of the people that have met that person that day.
8) Enlist the help of others & one question to explode your connections.
The first part of this rule really echoes rule number 2, that its more than likely your existing contacts will be able to introduce you to the people you want to meet. But with rule number 8 it really applies to everyone you know. And instead of looking to ask people who they can introduce you to, think yourself who you could introduce one of your connections to, and aim to become an introducing machine. Scott says to aim to at least make one introduction per week. Something I bet none of us will be doing currently! When you do ask someone to introduce you to someone new then you should use the following question, “Do you know someone else that I might be able to help?”
9) Create genuine online connections & find your tribe.
Online it is almost too easy to make connections these days, how much effort does it really take to send a friend request or to even send an email to someone, but as with most things in life ‘you get what you pay for’, so all of these online connections that you are making, you have to ask yourself how much are they really worth. Now im not dis-regarding the value of the internet in making connection but simply this rule states why end witha friend request or an email, get out and try to meet that person if its possible, invite them to a Skype chat and really connect meaningfully. The second thing to note on this point and something that really stood out for myself when listening to Scott was the importance of making the right kind of connections, or as Scott would say, finding your tribe. This effectively means finding like-minded people and getting noticed in the right social circles, both on and offline. So if you are looking to become influential and make meaningful connections in the world of lifestyle design its a idea to become active in forums debating the subject, make sure you are commenting and leaving feedback on the leading blogs about the subject. This applies to any area and any walk of life, if you are looking to make political connections then you will need to find out where those types are already talking and join in the conversation.
10) Build your in-person community & Become a local.
In both the business and personal sides of connecting and networking these days, too many people are neglecting the offline world due to the ease and popularity of online tools to instantly talk to hundreds of people, thousands in the case of Twitter. But if you are looking to make some connections that last, that provide real value then it is imperitive that you don’t disregard the offline world and your in-person connections. The same principles of ‘finding your tribe’ apply however so it is important to become a local within the communities that you wish to make connections in. Scott says that if you become a local within these circles then the connections you are looking for will happen naturally. So why not think about the locations that the people you want to meet are hanging out, whether that be in the business sense or personal sense, so consider both the pub and local resturants in addition to local business breakfast meetings. Make sure you commit to these groups and make your presence felt by personally getting the know people and don’t be the guy who ends up looking like an automatic business card dispenser.
11) Provide unique experiances & create real relationships with influence.
You may notice that a few of these rules do risk repeating the same point, but I like to think of them as describing the two sides of the same coin. So in this rule, its all about cementing the point of quality over quantity, you can do this by providing your connections with some unique experiances. Scott uses the example of when he met Leo Babauta that he offered to show him some of the local running routes, Scott knew this was one of Leo’s interests so it helped create a relationship with real influence.
12) Write people into your world & create lifetime connections
This rule again heavily relates to a few of the other previously stated. The thing that you should take from this rule is to aim to ‘write people into your world’, this means that the connections you make should be so strong that those people could be written into your life and almost be viewed as lifelong friends not connections. The benefits of which don’t need to be explained im sure, I know that personally I would do anything for my close friends, people that have been writen into my life.
Now if you are familular with Scott Dinsmore you will know that theres always a bonus or freebee so onto Rule 13 of 12!
13) Be YOU!
In my opinion, the most important rule of all. Always just be yourself, (a respectful yourself, not quite the sunday morning dressing-gown yourself). The quickest way not to connect with people is to be fake. Nobody wants to be associated or spend time with people trying to be something they are not.
In conclusion then Scott’s rules can be summed up in four main rules I think,
- Make an effort –
- Be Real –
- Care –
-Help Others to Help You -
Some lasting quotes and thoughts from the webinar were left to none other than Mahatma Gandhi.
“First they IGNORE you, then they LAUGH at you, then they FIGHT you, then you WIN” – Mahatma Gandhi
If you are still left wondering quite how making and having strong connections and support around you will actually benefit yourself then answer this question
“What would be possible if the people around you refused to let you fail?”
If you want to learn more about this subject from the man himself Scott is currently running a course called How To Connect With Anyone. You can learn more about it here
Let me know your thoughts about the topics discussed in the comments below.