The Art of Asking

3 years ago by in Featured Articles, Leadership, Marketing Tagged: , ,

negotiation-5I’m fortunate to have a lot of friends in the business world. With the amount of traveling I’ve done, coupled with the big brands I’ve worked for, meeting people is never a problem.

Developing and keeping those relationships over time takes work. But generally, I find mutually beneficial relationships are easy to find and easy to keep.

One of those business contacts recently called me and actually pitched me on business. She reps a big firm that wanted to work with H&R Block and our social team. The problem was, we recently decided to work with a similar vendor.

She was a little taken aback and asked why I didn’t think about doing business with her. She asked why I didn’t give them the first try at the relationship.

My response: you never asked.

You can’t count on people to reach out to you if they don’t know you’re interested in their business. Even if you’ve known a contact for a long time, you still need to reach out. The art of the asking is no art at all: you just have to ask.

When I gave her that feedback, she was quiet and thought about it for a second.

“We get along so well and I guess our professional friendship is great but I never thought of just straight-up asking you,” she said.

I’m sure it’s an oversight she’ll not repeat.

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