The Art of Schmoozing

I’ve often promoted the idea that we are in the business of building relationships. Nowhere is this more true than in our sales efforts, no matter if you’re the GM, the Director, the Sales Manger or the Receptionist.

Guy Kawasaki recently posted his ideas about relationship building…schmoozing. I especially like these two:

1. Understand the goal. Darcy Rezac in his book, The Frog and the Prince, wrote the world's best definition of schmoozing: “Discovering what you can do for someone else.” Herein lies eighty percent of the battle: great schmoozers want to know what they can do for you, not what the you can do for them. If you understand this, the rest is just mechanics.

2. Ask good questions, then shut up. The mark of a good conversationalist is not that you can talk a lot. The mark is that you can get others to talk a lot. Thus, good schmoozers are good listeners, not good talkers. Ask softball questions like, “What do you do?” “Where are you from?” “What brings you to this event?” Then listen. Ironically, you'll be remembered as an interesting person.

So, before you head-off to your next trade show or sales call, read Guy’s notes…then, read them again. I did.