Summer is winding down and hopefully we have all enjoyed some rejuvenating activities. I find that the back-to-school mentality carries through to the business world with clients, customers and prospects who are all anxious to get back on track and get some projects moving forward.

What urgent problems do you need to solve? What creative ideas have you hatched over the summer months? Take a moment to think about what you want to focus on and make a plan for the next week, month and between now and the end of the year. That should get you moving in the right direction.

Consider that business does not move forward without prospects, customers or clients who are interested in what you have to offer. So be sure that networking is at the top of your list of things to do. Block out some portion of time everyday to contact current clients, past, clients and prospects. Also include some effort everyday that will put you in front of or in contact with some new people.

What is your networking plan for the next four months? Get out and meet people in your community. Check for networking groups in your area. Visit your local Chamber of Commerce meeting. How about Lions Clubs, Rotary, Kiwanis and business mixers? Be sure you bring plenty of business cards.

Look at the potential on your desk. I have one client doing a business card blitz right now. He has about three hundred business cards he collected over the past year or so. I suggested that he contact every person he has a business card for and remind that person who he is and see if they have any upcoming needs for his service. At the same time we are getting all of that contact data entered into a database so that these prospects can be contacted periodically utilizing an automated contact management system.

Your contact list is your most important business growing asset. How organized is your list? What are you doing to build that list? I took a business course this summer with Alex Mandossian who reminded me that we all need to focus on the people not the product. It’s fun to develop new products and services but we need people who can buy those products and services. Focus on building your sphere of influence and meaningful business relationships. Then the rest will come.

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