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Ackert Advisory Blog

How to Ask for Referrals

In some parallel universe somewhere, service professionals ask for referrals without any hesitation or fear of repercussion. They meet their clients at a nice cafe, and after enjoying a delicious meal, they say, "I've done a great job for you. Now I want you to refer me to everyone you know so that I can do a great job for them too." Their clients nod, recognizing the win-win proposition, take out their cell phones and call all of their colleagues with the referral. The service professionals don’t feel like used-car salesmen. The clients don’t feel like they're being pressured. Everyone is happy. And all the items on the dessert menu are fat-free.

But in this universe, things are rarely that easy. Service professionals are so terrified that they'll pressure, offend, and ultimately lose their clients that they avoid the topic of referrals altogether. The boldest of us slip in an "oh, and by the way, keep me in mind if you know anyone who could use my services" as their client is heading out the door. But most just hope their good work will speak for itself and that the client will take the hint. No wonder there are so few rainmakers out there.

But it doesn't have to be this hard. The alternate reality doesn't have to be so alternate. All it takes is the right technique and some practice. This video provides several asking techniques, at least one of which will suit your personality and style. Pick the one that works best for you and try it out on your next client. You'll find it's easier than you think. And almost as good as a fat-free dessert menu.


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