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It Was A Dark And Stormy Night…

…and the estimating department had just put on a new pot of coffee with the hopes they have not reached the point of diminishing returns on their caffeine intake. As the clock approached midnight, the chief estimator entered the room, shaking the rain from his hat while no one said a word.

Carl, the rookie, peered above his monitor, still trying to get past the careless mistake from the last bid, he wanted more than life to not miss anything on this one. As the chief approached his desk, Carl was certain the entire room could hear his heart beating. “Listen Kid,” barked the chief, “I have been doing this a long time and the secret to success in this game is simple…”

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I have been toying with the idea to begin a blog posting with the famous line, ‘It was a dark and stormy night.’ for a while now and it finally dawned on me this week how I could pull this off. With apologies to Nike, the answer was, just do it. The point being, with the Internet and social media, there is nothing stopping me from writing a blog dealing with building new business in the construction marketplace with any title I desire. That is the power and freedom of social media, just do it.

I have shared more than once my conversion from being a staunch ‘agnostic’ to the whole social media, blogging game to a full-bore evangelist. When I first heard of blogging, my initial thought was, ‘What kind of egomaniac would create a page where he/she posts their thoughts with the expectation that others will want to read their offerings.

The same with Twitter…how in the world could there ever be any practical business use for a company to gain any traction by ‘Tweeting’?

We are currently working with a client who is in the midst of a total rebrand; Website 2.0, social media explosion even a new ‘mascot’. One of the neat things for me during this has been going back over the basics with the client and taking a look at my own company and how they each apply. However, the freedom to initiate change is often negated by the lack of drive.

So, apart from writing a blog with the cliché for a title, what else do I plan on doing?

I am going to encourage you to write a blog, or hire someone to write one for you.

I am going to encourage you to add at least two more blogs to your RSS feed or subscribe to them.

I am going to encourage you to have someone listen to your sales presentation and give you their honest feedback.

I am going to encourage you to take a look at what you use for your CRM and come up with five items you need for it to do that it isn’t already…and come up with a plan to make that happen.

I am going to encourage you to add ten new and appropriate contacts on LinkedIn, join two new groups show your expertise by answering at least one question.

I am going to encourage you to join or start your own networking group.

I am going to encourage you to set a goal of ‘x’ number of contacts and forward them your ‘Finder’s Fee’ agreement. (If you don’t have one, let me know and I will send you ours.)

There are so many ‘little’ things we can do that will help us build new business, the problem is that too often we are busy ‘sustaining old business’ to think about the new. One is never too successful to learn new ways to make things better.

And as far as storms go, I am reminded of the old saying that Noah did not wait until it started raining to begin building the ark…and if the past 18 months have not been stormy, call me and tell me your secret.

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Bobby Darnell is the founder and Principal of Construction Market Consultants, Inc. An Atlanta based management consulting group specializing in business development, sales, marketing and profitability as well as executive placement for the Architectural, Engineering and Construction industry.

Bobby can be reached at bobbydarnell [at] cmconl.com

www.cmconl.com

About the Author

Bobby Darnell is the founder and Principal of Construction Market Consultants, Inc., An Atlanta based management consulting group specializing in CRM, Business Development, Sales, Marketing as well as Executive Placement and Recruiting for the Architectural, Engineering and Construction industry.

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