Yesterday I published a LinkedIn post on the The Art of the Online Invitation. It focused on how I go about sending LinkedIn invitations. Today I’d like to share why both giving and receiving the right invitation is so important to your business.
I received an invitation to connect this morning from Joe Burton. We had both worked individually with one of the top automotive groups in St. Petersburg, FL. Two years ago Joe and I had discussed working together. The result was not a no, just more of a not yet.
Of course I said yes to his invitation. Joe stands head and shoulders above everyone else in his field, and not just literally. That’s why Joe’s invitation is so important. His decision was measured, well thought out and timed perfectly. It happened when Joe was ready.
I attended a holiday party recently. Almost everything was beautiful, except for the desert table. One of the guests had chosen to bake something special, placed it on the table, then surrounded it with business cards. I wasn’t sure about the protocol, so I grabbed the gooy chocolate treat, popped it into my mouth and picked up a card.
Too late I realized my mistake. I couldn’t clean the card, couldn’t put it in my pocket, so I had to throw it away. I’ll remember the treat, the individual, and the incident for a very long time.
Twenty years ago I received an email invitation with the subject line: “Looking For My Lost Brother”. On Thanksgiving morning, me, my big brother Lee and CBS will gather together to celebration the anniversary of that first reunion.
I am thankful for each invitation I receive, and respectful in the way I extend an invitation. Here are some thoughts on why invitations are important:
When you extend an invitation, It allows the individual to choose to accept. Prospects respect your understanding that in today’s marketplace, they make the decision to engage. You simply provide the opportunity.
Crashing the party may work, but often something gets broken in the process. Don’t let yourself get in a situation where they need to call a wrecker to haul away that fragile bit of trust you drove off the cliff.