My book, Room Full of Referrals, co-authored with Dr. Tony Alessandra and Dawn Lyons, recently celebrated its 10th anniversary. The Room Full of Referrals method applies DiSC® profiles to business networking by mapping Drive, Influence, Steadiness, and Compliance onto networking personalities.
Many professionals use referral marketing – personal recommendations through networking – to spread the word about their business. Yet when asked if they are getting all the referrals they want from their networking efforts, the answer is usually No. That’s because most people are unaware that their behavioral style is affecting their referability.
Knowing and understanding your own behavior style helps you adapt to the context of the networking situation you are in. It also helps you recognize and understand the style of someone else so that you can network more effectively with them. A key point is that we are all a blend of each of the styles, with different intensity levels. In the book we’ve changed the names from the DiSC titles so they are more appropriate for people who are networking.
The Four Common Behavioral Styles
- Go-Getter: Fast-paced, task-oriented, & doesn’t like to be wrong about anything.
Driven, Bold, Decisive, Strong Desire to Lead
- Promoter: Fast-paced, people-oriented, gregarious, & likes to be in the spotlight.
Energetic, Outgoing, Fun-Loving, Positive, Talkative
- Nurturer: Slower-paced, people-oriented, dislikes confrontation, & helps others.
Patient, Helpful, Understanding, Reserved
- Examiner: Slower-paced, task-oriented, methodical, likes facts, & dislikes hype.
Effective, Efficient, Thorough, Research-Oriented
Understanding the four different styles of behavior is an excellent way to gain knowledge about how to adjust your sales and marketing program to the style of communication most comfortable to the customer. It is also beneficial to determine how to best connect with your fellow networkers. All clients and all networkers prefer communication in a manner that is most familiar to them. Knowing their personal style helps you customize a sales or networking approach for each unique individual.
My co-author Tony Alessandra calls this The Platinum Rule – the idea of treating people the way they want to be treated.
To be a successful networker, we must build strong relationships with our referral partners. When we build a relationship, we want it to have a strong foundation. The way we build the foundation changes when we have a better understanding of people and their personal behavioral style. As my co-author Dawn says, “If we’re going to teach people how to build referral partnerships, we better be teaching them about behavioral styles so that they can treat people accordingly within the relationship. Otherwise, relationships are going to keep fading out because people just aren’t being treated appropriately.”
As I reflect on ten years of Room Full of Referrals, I am proud of the reach it has had. This book has helped people with their business relationships and their referral relationships. It has also helped people in their personal relationships; the information can be applied across the span of your entire life.
What about you? How has learning about networking behavioral styles helped you, either professionally or personally? I’d love to read your thoughts in the comments below.
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