Before I begin, ask yourself which statement you’d like to be said about you:
A) “This guy/gal is persistent to the point of driving me nuts!”
B) “This guy/gal seems to be pretty lazy with their lack of initiative and motivation.”
Both statements do contain a hint of negativity as no one wants to be annoying; however, if your annoying of someone is being caused by your passion for persistence, then I would argue that is 100x’s better than annoyance being caused by your love of laziness. Persistence is a function of motivation. The more motivation you have towards someone or something, the more persistence you will focus on obtaining it. I’m not sure about you, but I would never turn someone down from a job because they display motivation. This brings up the question…
Why Are So Many People Afraid of Getting a Tad Annoying?
Note: I use the word “tad” to differentiate from being obnoxious. You want to be annoying in a good way, not in an obnoxious way.
This can be applied to many things in life, but for this article, I want to apply it to networking. I am by no means an expert real estate investor (I’m always looking to learn), but I do have experience, and have learned a ton already. For this reason, I’ve been contacted by quite a few people wanting to “talk” about investing while attempting to pick up some nuggets of knowledge. I have no issue with this at all, but as one of my previous articles discussed ways to make your routines efficient, I have found a simple (but very effective) way to save myself time in regards to the “Hey, let’s have a coffee” networker…
The Persistence Test
What’s the test? I ignore the networker’s first contact with me. Yea, yea, I know what you’re thinking, “what a jerk!,” but allow me to explain. There are way too many tire-kickers in this business. That’s my polite way of saying, “time wasters”. They suck up valuable time from your day and then nothing ever comes out of it. An easy way I’ve found to filter out tire-tickers is through this test.
If the networker is truly a motivated person in their business (whether it be an investor, Realtor, mortgage banker, etc.), they’ll at least give me one more contact attempt out of pure persistence. These are the people I want to network with!!! Although I don’t do this on purpose, there have been times (I’m human) where even after a second contact attempt, I forget to return the phone call/email. I then get a 3rd contact attempt… these are the goldmines! I’ve often thought about changing The Persistence Test to ignoring the first two contact attempts, but I haven’t gone that far yet. Point being, I want to talk with people I know are truly motivated!
So you want to have a cup of coffee with that person? Then don’t give up! You could very well be going up against someone’s variation of a Persistence Test. I suffered from the “I don’t want to annoy this person” syndrom when first getting started, but I’ve learned that…
1) People are busy and human. At times, its simply them forgetting to get back to you due to their busy schedule.
2) People appreciate seeing motivation on your part.
You don’t want to blow up their phone with 10 calls in a 2 hour span, but at the same time, you don’t want to give up after one phone call or email has not been returned. Mix things up. Give them a phone call and then follow that up with an email, or vice versa. I’ve found that reaching out to people through various mediums can be pretty darn effective. In this day and age of social media, you can also add Twitter and/or Facebook to means to contact people.
One thing is for sure, giving yourself the “I tried calling them” excuse is not even close to being valid with the numerous other communication options available! Worst case. Someone picks up the phone and screams at you, “Leave me alone! You are way too persistent!!”. Other than your ear drum ringing a bit, is that really a bad thing to have said about you? Imagine this person talking with a few investor buddies at breakfast:
Investor A: “You would not believe how persistent this person named Chris was. He was relentless in trying to set up a meeting with me!”
Investor B: “You say this person was ‘persistent’ and ‘relentless’?”
Investor A: “Absolutely!”
Investor B: “Can I have their contact information?”
This is a bit extreme, but motivated (persistent) people want to work with other motivated people, so if they “negative” of you is you are annoying with persistence, I’d take that as a compliment. Remember, that cup of coffee could be worth 20 guru courses combined or could be your ticket to an investor who will gobble up your wholesale properties. Don’t be afraid to walk on that “annoyance ice”, you just might fall through into a lake of opportunity!
Photo: Alex Indigo