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Andrew Robertson on Relationships – Time to Get Great At Business Development

Mo asks Andrew Robertson: When did you first realize that business development or relationship development was a good thing?

  • The first time Andrew realized business development was fundamentally about discipline was while working as a barman in Maidenhead where he learned how to connect with people and build rapport very quickly. It was there he met an insurance broker that offered him a job.
  • As a student working in the evenings, Andrew learned that if he made 100 phone calls on Monday night he could line up 10 meetings for the rest of the week, which would usually result in 3 sales.
  • He started experimenting with the approach he was taught and learned two important lessons very quickly. The method he was taught was tried and tested, and if he didn’t do the work of making the calls, he didn’t get the results he needed. No one else was going to make those calls if he didn’t do it.
  • He wasn’t in the relationship-building business yet, that came later. Andrew learned the importance of discipline and trusting the process.
  • The idea that people are born with the habits that make them successful is incorrect. Discipline can be learned like any area of expertise.
  • The most important thing is to get a meeting, not to have everything prepared. Don’t get ahead of yourself. If you focus on the delivery first, you’ll never set the meeting in the first place.
  • You need to pick up the phone and offer them something valuable and interesting as quickly as you can. That’s how you earn the time to develop a relationship afterward.
  • Pulling insights from other proposals and using them to intrigue other prospects enough to get a meeting is a good example of an offer that gets people interested.
  • You don’t always have to go straight to the ultimate decision maker. Getting a meeting with a mid-level manager can be a great opportunity too. Every meeting is useful in learning more about the company or the industry.
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