I'm looking to build a community.
Right now, I’m calling it the Coalition of Responsible Adults (CORA). CORA candidates are people who can be relied on to be where they’re supposed to be, when they’re supposed to be there, prepared to do what they’re supposed to do…no excuses. NO. EXCUSES!!!
As rare as these people are, they do exist. I’m determined to build a network of these people so that we can support each other's business pursuits.
I’m not sure how I will organize this group. My intention is for this group to be a professional referral network that we can leverage to grow each other’s businesses. I’ve paid to join a number of different types of clubs and organizations with the objective of joining a community that would help me grow my business. I’ve been disappointed each time. My only reason for joining a networking organization is to get my phone ringing and I've been unable to find an organization that delivers what I'm looking for.
My idea of a valuable networking organization is one where each member is involved in three to five inquiries, referrals, or recommendations per week. Three to five times per week, I should be:
- Receiving an inquiry because someone in the organization recommended me, or
- Making a referral to someone in the group so they get an inquiry, or
- Making or receiving recommendations about ways to generate business.
- "I'm going to XYZ event on Tuesday that you might want to check out."
- "Calendly.com has really streamlined things for me and made me more productive".
- "Just finished reading 'The ONE Thing'...best business book I've ever read."
These are the kinds of interactions I'm looking to have multiple times on a weekly basis. I want to be a part of a robust, active, "chasing the business" atmosphere where everyone has their foot on the gas in growth mode.
Who Am I Looking For?
I’m looking for hustlers. I'm looking for people like me who have to go out into the woods each day and hunt for their food.
I'm looking for people who, like me, have grown frustrated with wasting time and money in "networking" groups that don't yield any new business.
Anybody interested in participating in this group should be actively seeking to grow their business and actively out selling themselves IN PERSON. I’m looking for people who know that you have to stand in front of people and shake hands to do business. I'm looking for people who understand that you have to talk to people on the phone to do business and that you cannot text/email your way to a sale. Most importantly, I'm looking for people who can be relied on to be where they’re supposed to be, when they’re supposed to be there, prepared to do what they’re supposed to do...no excuses. I'm looking for people who produce results, not excuses.
How Will CORA Work?
The sole purpose of CORA is to generate as much business as possible for the members and do it as cheaply and efficiently as possible. I want us to know each other's businesses well enough that we can provide strong referrals as well as understand when we hear of an opportunity that someone in the group should pursue.
I'm looking to build a network where strong strategic partnerships develop so we can leverage cross-marketing opportunities. People who make wine and people who make cheese service the same clientele without competing. They should be working together to bring in more business.
I want us to share what events we're attending each week that we think may be worthwhile for other group members to attend in order to generate business. This is a great way for us to routinely get face time with each other and build those strong relationships without having to waste time at a weekly "networking" meeting that is really just a group of the same ole people hanging out each week. It also allows us to work a room as a team and make referrals on the spot. "Oh, you need XYZ? My friend Alex is here and does exactly that. Let me introduce you."
Basically, I'm looking for a Coalition of Responsible Adults that want to help build the referral network / business development engine that we would all like to be a part of.
Where Do I Sign???!!!
Right now, I'm thinking about organizing this group on Facebook. I'm not a fan of Facebook, in general, but I am a member of a couple of business groups on there that I derive significant value from, so I know that Facebook can be used very effectively as a business collaboration tool. Facebook groups seem to work well for organizing things like CORA, so that's probably where I'll organize the group.
There are no fees or meetings to attend. My goal for CORA is maximum return on minimum investment of time and money. I feel like with the right people, we can do everything we need to do without any kind of meetings. People who need to meet in person will make those arrangements organically.
Can I Tell Anybody About CORA?
The problem with not being a responsible adult is no one self-identifies as such. Nobody raises their hand when you ask: "Who here is generally unreliable, irresponsible, full of excuses, or otherwise cannot be consistently relied upon?" Nobody raises their hand, yet these seem to be the only kind of people that some of us come across, all day every day. So do yourself a favor and don't share this with anybody who you KNOW doesn't qualify for membership. It will only create hurt feelings now or down the road. We are all always auditioning for our next role. So you've already seen what you need to see from someone to know if you should talk to them about CORA.
Feel free to share this page, but I encourage you to be extremely selective about whom you share it with. I've only sent this to a handful of people who I believe qualify. Remember, I'm looking for "mature, responsible adults who can be relied on to be where they’re supposed to be, when they’re supposed to be there, prepared to do what they’re supposed to do...no excuses. I'm looking for people who produce results, not excuses." That set of requirements alone will eliminate almost every individual you know. I don't expect this to be a large group, but I do expect it to be an extremely valuable one to be a part of, if I can find the right people.
So feel free to share, but understand that nobody gets in just because they would like to be in. My house, my rules. This is not a group about promoting yourself and your events, etc. This is a group about creating a rising tide that lifts all boats so we can all make more money. That's it. Any kind of group posts should be relevant and meaningful within the context of the specific purpose of the group: to generate as much business as possible for the members and do it as cheaply and efficiently as possible. None of us needs more spam. Group members will be held accountable for the people they bring into the group, so if you bring someone into the group who proves to be a problem, you may get shown the door right along with them. "Mature, responsible adults who can be relied on..." Think carefully about who you recommend because your reputation and your membership is on the line.