Sunday I got a call from one of my best friends from my high school days. He happens to be a JibberJobber user and had a great question for me… he started with “this is just between you and me” and something like “I promise, no matter what the answer is, I won’t tell anyone.” He asked me:
With all of the contacts and relationships you have, do you ever feel overwhelmed? Does JibberJobber help with that at all?
Ah, what a great question! This is like asking the Coke driver if he drinks Pepsi, or the preacher if he sins 🙂 🙂
I appreciated the question because I’ve frequently wondered how many CEO’s are in touch with their own products, and familiar enough to actually do a tech support call. I recently had lunch with Twelve Horses president Steve Spencer who said that he can field a tech support call with no problem and that most times people don’t know that they are talking to the president. I think that is an awesome example and I worry about the day I might lose touch with JibberJobber reality (I see it frequently with software and wonder “does anyone at that company even use their own product??).
My answer to “do I ever feel overwhelmed” is yes, absolutely. While I have a team behind me I do feel like a lone ranger with marketing and some other things (I’m sure many of you feel like that also). I have easily had contact with more than 1,000 people in the last year talking about JibberJobber – from career experts to bloggers to newspaper editors to professionals. It’s hard to keep it all straight – a lot of my business is based around networking. That is, relationships. I really try and form relationships as best I can, which means that I’m not just gathering business cards, rather, having significant discussion. This takes a lot of work!
My answer to “does JibberJobber help with all that” is very simple. I have logged into JibberJobber more than anyone else (well, perhaps my dev team has logged in more, but not on the live server!). I use JibberJobber at least 5 to 10 times a day… I will add new users, put a log entry in (from an e-mail or phone call), create an action item, or something like that, during the day. I have over 800 contacts that I have put in, almost one-by-one, and have ranked and/or tagged each of them. I love the birthday reminder to let me know who has a birthday coming up, and depend on getting action items e-mailed to me. If I didn’t have JibberJobber I would have to have Goldmine, ACT! or SalesForce.com to manage it all.
So thanks for the question – here’s my question to YOU. You know you should be doing “all this stuff” but really, are you actually doing it? I wasn’t before I got laid off, even though I knew I should. Here’s a quick checklist for you:
- Are you networking in person, face-to-face? I don’t care how introverted you are, you can have the pain of getting over it now or have the pain of long-term unemployment later.
- Are you developing a personal brand that is “googleable”? If you search on your name, do you find awesome, on-brand stuff? Do you have a google alert set up for your own name or company?
- Are you really following up with relationships that you form, online or offline? After you meet someone, is there a real follow-up that allows you to develop a real relationship? I’m talking about more than the canned “it was nice to meet you – here’s what I do” e-mail.
- Are you using something like JibberJobber to see and manage your relationships? Look, CRM-fanatics say that software can’t manage a relationship – and I agree. But you need something, from sticky notes to a notebook to free JibberJobber to really, really manage the details around relationships. What’s stopping you? I don’t care if you are president of a college, a career coach, resume writer, or recruiter. Relationships are key, you preach it… do you practice what you preach?
I didn’t practice what I preached 20 months ago. And I came to regret it. However, I do now (with regard to this stuff :p). How are you doing?