Little Black Book of Connections

You may recall that I read the Little Red Book of Selling last year. I liked it a lot. This black book about connecting and networking is just as good. Gitomer is my main man. He’s my Stephen Covey. He’s my Dale Carnegie. He’s my Lou Holtz.

To be honest, I haven’t purchased books by any of those other guys, so take my proclamation with a grain of salt. I just think these Gitomer books are so solid, that I don’t need anybody else telling me how to run my life. My whole sales, networking, personal improvement, goal setting, and positive attitude reading is totally wrapped up in Gitomer. I’m going to get his gold and green books shortly.

These are just fun to read and pleasing to the fingers and eyes. Grab one when you are in the bookstore the next time. You’ll love how solid the cloth-like cover is. You’ll marvel at the dense, high quality paper stock. He uses a lot of different font sizes, colors, and backgrounds. He has pictures, sidebars, tables of contents, and lists all over the place. It’s totally different from any business or instructional book out there.

But mostly, I like his message. He is about giving of yourself to build your brand and get known. He says the three ingredients to getting known are writing, e-zine, and speaking. He was one of the catalysts for my start in writing. I’m slowly piecing together this type of model for myself (I do mean slowly).

He has a few key quotes that I like:

People don’t like to be sold, but they love to buy. All things being equal, people want to do business with their friends. All things being not quite so equal, people STILL want to do business with their friends.

He has a lot of endearing and quirky applications of his theories and they are very thought provoking. Not all of them are up my alley because we are all wired differently, but they make you think of new and different ways to connect and sell. He speaks concretely, not theoretically, and gives a ton of examples and step-by-step formulas.

His main theme is give value first. He says:

My theme of give value first, actually my mantra of give value first, manifests itself in several ways: I give value first with my column, I give value first with Sales Caffeine, I give value first with my Web site, and I provide sales information to millions of people weekly so that they can make more sales. By giving value first, I have created a base of connections, and a basis for wealth. And so can you, if you’re willing to give it away before you get it.

I’m not sure how this works in the real world, but I think it’s worth a try. Even if your cynical enough not to believe in his message or you find his ideas corny or hokey – still read it. At the very least you’re going to get some good ideas from this book in a short time period. It’s a very efficient read because of his presentation. It has lists of best places to network, lists of rules for relationships, three secrets to getting known, 8.5 elements of positioning…bullet points and numbered lists, fun and easy. I’m a big fan, I just have to reread them and start applying them rather than writing about them.