Everyone Communicates, Few Connect | John C. Maxwell | Part 5

Connecting with people and growing your network requires a lot of energy! It doesn’t just happen over night and it takes a long time!

“If you want to connect with others, you must be intentional about it. And that always requires energy.”[note]Page 72[/note]

If you’re in sales, marketing, customer service, HR… or any job working with people, you’re always connecting and communicating. You’re spending countless hours doing your job. Are you tired at the end of the day?! Heck ya.. I’ve had the opportunity to connect with Jack Kosakowski (@JackKosakowski1) on LinkedIn. He puts an incredible amount of time and energy into his work and I can tell you that it makes a difference. He is a change creator… And he’s always connecting and providing value… and he does it intentionally!

“If you want to connect, don’t wait. Initiate![note]Page 79[/note]

Basically… Get it done! One of my favorite quotes is from bodybuilder Ronnie Coleman, “Ain’t nothin’ to it but to do it”. What do you have to lose? You can’t go through life scared! You’ll never get anywhere. People are people. Find a talking point to initiate a conversation and go for it.

“If you wait until you can do everything for everybody, instead of something for somebody, you’ll end up not doing anything for anybody.” – Malcolm Bane[note]Page 79[/note]

I think that’s a fun way to look at it. You’re never going to be able to please everybody, so you might as well start somewhere and start pleasing anybody. Call the CEO of a company and begin a conversation. Tweet someone really powerful. Send a connection request to your favorite writer.

For some reason, we think that there is a perfect moment in life to do things. There is no perfect moment to initiate a conversation with someone. It might be awkward or you’re scared, but you have to move past it.

“The people who connect with others are the ones who go ahead and do what the rest of us never quite got around to.”[note]Page 81[/note]

They’re change creators; they ask for help; they acknowledge their weakness and see the strength in someone else. Get over the insecurity and worry, and just do it!

However, once you’ve made a connection with someone, the rest takes patience. Remember, you have to get off your agenda and onto theirs. You can’t just email someone on Monday and expect them to trust you by Friday. It doesn’t work like that.

“Good connections don’t always run the fastest, but they are able to take others with them. They exhibit patience. They set aside their own agendas to include others.”[note]Page 85[/note]

Would you rather move extremely fast by yourself or a little slower with a team? Getting to the finish line is great, but having a group of people to share it with is even better. And, if you move too fast, you have to wait for everyone to catch up… and then you’re still losing time. It takes energy to move with someone faster than you and it takes energy to move with someone slower than you… so if you operate at the same speed, you’ll save energy and frustration. Patience is key in all aspects of life!


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Everyone Communicates, Few Connect | John C. Maxwell

Everyone Communicates, Few Connect | John C. Maxwell | Part 4

If you can create a connection with someone where you can exude conviction, passion and credibility, you’re headed in the right direction. If you’re going to connect with someone, you also need to make sure that your communication goes beyond words.

“As a species, we remember 85 to 90 perfect of what we see but less than 15 percent of what we hear.” – Sonya Hamlin[note]Page 53[/note]

Make sense right… now think about it. A lot of the things we do, we have a visual. Being in the information age, we’re always seeing new things… so you need to stick out… BIG TIME. I’m sure you spend all day on Twitter, LinkedIn Facebook and YouTube… so what catches your eye?

You need to be able to do that with people when you’re connecting with them. I know sales people that wear fun ties and socks. You can guarantee the prospect is going to remember them. Sales people often put images of their children on their computer so the prospect can ‘AWW’ at how cute their family is. You’ve only got a few seconds to win people over, so you better make the most of it!

“Expand Your Range of Expressions”[note]Page 56[/note]

Be excited, smile, move your eyebrows… use emotions to help tell a story or convey a message. Why do you think comedians are so good at what they do? Because they’re able to tell a joke and put emotion behind it.

I took American Sign Language growing up and the number one lesson everyone learns, other than memorization, is that you have to use facial expressions to convey a message. I challenge you to watch this TED talks. It’s pretty entertaining and only 5:55 long.

“People may hear your words, but they feel your attitude. That will either enable you to connect with people and win them over, or it will alienate them and cause you to lose them.”[note]Page 65[/note]

It’s another one of those things that you forget on a daily basis. Words are one thing, but the attitude behind it is how people feel about you. It’s hard to put a finger on it, but I’m sure you know exactly what I’m talking about. There’s those people that are confident and charismatic and then there’s those people that aren’t. That’s the different between half full or half empty type people. We all know a few of each and we all know which are easier to talk to and connect with.

My favorite “Ah-Ha” from this section of the book is about charisma.

“Here’s the bottom line on charisma. You don’t have to be gorgeous, a genious, or a masterful orator to possess presence and to connect with others. You just need to be positive, believe in yourself, and focus on others.”[note]Page 66[/note]

Sounds too easy… right? It’s not! After moving over to my new job, I had no idea what I was talking about when it came to the product. So What! I picked up the phone, called people with a positive attitude and began a dialogue. I even had to answer questions with, “I don’t know the answer to that question, but I’ll find it and get back to you.” It’s all about the state of mind and being helpful!

I’m very capable of being positive, engaging with people and problem solving… AND I bet you are too!

“Your message must be your own. So must your style. Work to discover that style and to develop your skills as a connector in every kind of situation.”[note]Page 69[/note]

I can not reiterate this enough! Whatever you do in life, make it your own. Add your own personal flair! You don’t need to recreate the wheel, but you need to personalize everything. It’s really common in sales roles to get email templates from coworkers. I LOVE it! But, in order for you to like the email, internalize the email and use the email, you need to add your personal touch to it.

I have an email I created that has an outstanding open and response rate. I’ve given it to other people to see what type of success they would have. Guess what… all they did was copy and paste it… and they had little success. Then they came back to me and complained that it didn’t work. I immediately asked them, “Did you make it your own and personalize it?” Their response, “No.”

So I sent them back to their desk and asked them to personalize it… and bam. They received the responses they were looking for. This goes the same for connecting with people. It isn’t a cut and paste technique. One way may work for someone that doesn’t work for anybody else.

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Get “Everyone Communicates, Few Connect” on Amazon.

There’s more to come from me about:

Everyone Communicates, Few Connect | John C. Maxwell