It happened again. You just wasted your time on a networking lunch with someone you'll never speak to again. They were nice enough, but the business potential was zero. And you now have 90 minutes less to complete the work that's waiting for you back at the office.
It happened again. You met with a prospective client who seemed like a sure bet. But after several nudges from you, they've stopped returning your phone calls.
Business development is full of moments like these. And in spite of your best efforts to make the process efficient, the fact remains that there will always be meetings that don't pay off. There will always be relationships that disappoint. It's discouraging, because given that the mission behind your business development activity is to secure new clients, you will only have one of two outcomes: success or failure. And given the nature of business development, you're likely to experience far more of the latter than the former.
But as a service provider, you have another mission: to help people. And in this regard, your time is never wasted. After all, didn't you provide some valuable advice during that networking lunch? And wasn't that prospective client grateful when you helped them understand that they had viable solutions? Even if they never do business with you, you planted a seed that will hopefully improve their lives in some way.
So, the next time you're feeling like your business development activities aren't paying off, consider that you have two missions. As a business person, your mission is to monetize your time. As a service provider, your mission is to help people. And while you can't always control the fulfillment of the first mission, you can always find a way to serve people. As long as you're doing that, your time is never wasted.
Authored by David Ackert