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From Business Cards to Business Relationships: Personal Branding and Profitable Networking Made Easy, 2nd Edition by Allison Graham

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Chapter 48

Communicating YOU

The 5-10-15-Second Communication

The two most predictable questions that will be asked when you meet someone are “Do you have a business card?” and “What do you do?”

Unfortunately, these are the two questions that are the most difficult for many professionals to answer appropriately and with confidence. After the last section, I'm hopeful that you'll never be caught without a business card again. Now we need to solve the seemingly mysterious second question.

A good friend once said, “If a person can't clearly tell me what he does between nine and five every day, how can he expect me to use his services and trust that he knows what he's doing?” It's a good point. Somewhere along the line the answer to this simple question became complicated.

Remember, it's your responsibility to make it easy for people to know who you are, what you do, and what you have to offer. So when you're asked what you do, establish enough understanding about your deliverables so your contact understands what you do. This is your first opportunity to educate your new contact about what you do and what you have to offer.

Earlier in the book we established that networking is an exercise in education and connection, not sales. That means you do not need to go into a huge sales pitch when asked this question at business functions.

The goal is to establish enough understanding so that when your contacts need your product or service, or know someone who does, they will think to call ...

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