Networking HQ BLOG with Larry James

Friday, February 10, 2012

NEVER Give Referrals to Crazy People in Your Network!

Filed under: Networking Tip,Referrals/Leads — Larry James @ 7:00 am

Crazy networkers drive me crazy!

You know who they are. They are the people who drink to much at meetings, who never give any referrals, who are not dependable, who bug the hell out of you by embarrassing you by following you around at networking events, who continually attempt to sell you their product or service even though you just met, those who – without permission – take your business card to get your e-mail address and put you on their never-ending promotion list, and people who give you a stack of cards expecting you to refer them to your clients although you hardly know their name, etc. The list goes on.

business card swapI am very careful who I give referrals to. AND I am also careful about referring anyone that I don’t like and trust. The truth is you can like someone and not trust them enough to pass them a referral. They may not have demonstrated their “trust level” to you in ways that have you feel comfortable enough to pass them a lead. I will never refer someone whom I have just met. The only exception “might” be if they were referred to me by a very close friend who I like and trust and who is in my own network.

When I refer someone, it’s like my reputation is on the line. In other words, the crazies you refer are a direct reflection of who you are!

If I refer them and they don’t perform or follow-up with me, I view it as a reflection upon my networking character. I learn very quickly to never trust them with future referrals. It is a wise networker who reports back to the person who gave you a referral. I want that. I need a brief report. Give me a call or send me an e-mail to at least let me know that you have contacted them and whether or not the referral worked. If you don’t follow-up on a referred business lead within 24 hours you probably didn’t deserve to get the lead in the first place.

“When those crazy people call you or actually make it into your office for a consult start asking for referrals after you politely tell them that they can’t pay you enough to take their case, don’t give them any names. Politely say something like “you have a really unique problem and I’m not sure who can help you. So I can’t comfortably recommend anyone.” At most give the crazy potential client a list of Google search terms to help them narrow their search. You don’t want to be associated with the whack-jobs by either friend or enemy. – Kevin Houchin, Attorney at Law

1. NEVER give referrals to crazy people in your network!
2. Never refer crazy people to anyone, especially your friends.
3. Stay away from crazy networkers!

netHQ

Copyright © 2012 – Larry James. Larry James is a Professional Speaker, Author and Coach. He presents networking seminars nationally and “Networking” coaching by telephone or one-on-one. His latest book is, Ten Commitments of Networking: Creative Ways to Maximize Your Personal Connections! Something NEW about Networking is posted on this Networking BLOG every 4th day! Visit Larry’s Networking Website at: “Networking HQ!”

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6 Comments »

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  6. Well said Larry. I simply can’t refer everyone who has ever handed me a business card. I have two or three trusted vendors in a few categories of expertise who I know and trust and refer. If there are people that I meet at networking functions that I feel a connection with, we may go have lunch and then get to know their professional track record and only then start talking about doing business together.

    Comment by Curtis Whipple — Friday, February 10, 2012 @ 7:47 am | Reply


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