Big deals in the Golden Age of Self-Promotion

Big deals in the Golden Age of Self-Promotion

I am lured as much as anyone by likes, follows, retweets and shares. But how much of that really matters in big deal making?

Sure, no one would argue the importance of the production and publication of timely, relevant content for a target audience. As gratifying as it is to see a post go “viral”, I asked myself whether any of the people-behind-the-accounts would actually refer a piece a business to me or write a job recommendation.

More importantly, I couldn’t remember the last time I proactively reached out to someone in my network to do any of these things for them. I am the first person to answer the call of a friend or contact for help in finding a new job, provide guidance or coaching, or to share information. But being proactive? That takes courage. Beyond it being the right thing to do, I’m learning it is the stuff that that keeps your network healthy.

Big deals, breaks and opportunities are the fruit of relationships made or strengthened in real life. Canvassing, engaging and posting on social are obviously necessary, but no one is going to hand you a career-changing deal from your blog post. That process requires real conversations and a coalescence of ideas that can only come from personal, focused engagement.

And no, not every deal requires a physical handshake, but I’ve never landed a high-value sale without at least a virtual conference.

The incredible ease of electronic communication has caused me to lose focus on the maintenance of business relationships in real life. As a result, many people in my network are an arms-length idea of people I used to know. This year I will be more proactive. An idea might be sprung in a single mind, but the next best thing comes from conversations in real life.

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