Steady as she grows!: Commitment takes persistent leadership
I’ve spoken over and over about commitment to the group as being the only guaranteed way to grow your business in a network. And in all the time I have been preaching this I still find that this principle never dawns on many of the network members. They often blame the network itself if they don’t get business automatically flowing inbound to their company.
You can lead a horse to water but you cannot make him drink. You can put a company into the network but you cannot make the members do the networking required to attract the network’s business to them.
There is only one way to make sure you have business inbound; only one sure way to grow. Participation.
Company managers who complain about results without looking at the efforts of their team members and their own selves will never be effective. This is because they are ignoring cause and effect. Within networks there are mountains of business to be had. But a steady push toward the network and their members has to come. And this must start from the top. When employees of a company not only have been told to work with the new network members, to continue to find ways when the business even looks slow, then the floodgates of trade will slowly come open. It is never over night. It is step by step. Sometimes it is like how you eat an elephant. Bite by bite. But if you go down this path you will definitely get there.
So don’t only tell your staff about the path you are on with the new partners but lead by example. Show how you are committed to working with new network members. March ahead of the troops. Think of your effort in financial terms. Your time and activity being your investments but the dividend is in future business. When you compound the interest and you add the efforts of your colleagues and new partners to the mix you might see a paltry return in the short run but the growth will be weightier and greater with every passing year. And it won’t be as long as you think. Keep your head down but keep it in the game. Keep moving forward inch by inch, yard by yard. You won’t simply be moving closer to your goal but you’ll see that the goal will start moving closer to you as well.
Gary Dale Cearley is the Managing Director of Advanced International Networks Ltd. (AIN), one of the fastest growing and most dynamic business-to-business networking organizations in the world. AIN’s networks include AerOceaNetwork (AON), XLProjects Network (XLP), and AiO Logistics Network. Gary Dale has been in many facets of international freight forwarding for more than two decades from operations to sales to the owner of the first 100% foreign owned freight forwarding company licensed in Vietnam. The companies that he has been involved with have been both generalists and specialists. He has also worked from large European and Asian multinationals (Danzas and Hankyu Express) as well has small start up forwarders. For the past ten years Gary Dale has owned and operated AIN. He has lived in several major cities in four different countries and he is multilingual. Currently Gary Dale runs the AIN operation from Bangkok, Thailand, but travels the world over.