Earlier this month we talked about inward and outward mindset and why this was important not only in ones personal life but also from the perspective of networking. A networking mindset that is healthy can help your business explode while an inward one will kill it. To read the first part of this series head here.
Without an outward mindset your business will either fail or become stagnant. I know this is a bold statement but it’s the absolute truth. Mindset will affect all that you do with your business. The decisions you make, the people you hire, the quality of relationships you choose. Think of mindset as the missing link to why people do what they do.
Have you ever come across vendors who do things that would clearly hurt their own business but they do it anyway? I think most of us can answer resoundingly “YES”. The reason they do it is that the inward mindset drives us to seek out justification for our actions.
Let’s use an example of a vendor who said something bad about you on social media and you feel angry. If you are in an inward mindset, you would probably lash back out at them because they made you feel bad. What would this in turn cause? Maybe the other vendor lashes back out and the cycle continues until each vendor has ruined their reputation.
From an outsider perspective this looks so odd, but I can’t tell you how many businesses do it on a daily basis. Why would they do this? One simple statement: When you are in an inward mindset the justification for your actions is more important than your own happiness. This is how destructive this force can be.
Now that we have all of this information how do we use our knowledge of mindset to improve our network and community? Well, the first thing is to assess yourself. Just get a piece of paper and think about the people you network with and the ones you don’t. Write down what you know about each person and then how often you network with them. If your finding it hard to put down anything for certain people, maybe you are slightly inward mindset toward them and viewing them as an object you have for your success. People in an outward mindset want to find out about the other person and have a genuine interest in their success.
Next, reach out to each vendor you don’t know and meet with them. Your goal of this meeting is to get curious and see who they are. What are their goals, aspirations and desires. This will help you to see who they are as a person. After you find out about them, assess what you have and offer to help them with a problem they may be having. This will throw off almost every vendor you meet because they are not used to it. If you aren’t quite sure how to help a vendor just simply ask “How can I help you?”. Every vendor meeting we have, we almost always ask this and have found this one statement to really help our relationships with others.
Last, after you agree to help them, check back in to see if your efforts were successful. This is an important step that is often overlooked. Some people think they are really being helpful but don’t get curious enough too see if they are causing more issues. This way you see if you are truly helping and adjust your efforts if needed.
This type of outreach and thought may seem small but it will having lasting impact in your community. The more vendors you network with and have an outward mindset to will spread throughout your community and the area you work in. Before you know it, other people will be asking to help you out and this will build a solid foundation for lasting relationships.
If you would like to find out more about mindset and training look into the Arbinger Institute and start reading their premiere book Leadership and Self Deception. This will give you a more in-depth look into Arbinger and their view on mindset shift. If you find yourself still curious, I would make the investment into a developing and implementing an outward mindset seminar. This one seminar will absolutely impact you in ways you never could have thought before.