When it comes to making referrals to their fellow BNI members, about 10% of members over-promise and under-deliver. As the Texans say, “All hat, no cattle.” These don’t follow through on their promises; they leave their referral partners hanging. In most cases, they make the promises because they want to help, but they destroy their own credibility by not following through.
Most BNI members take the approach “under-promise, over-deliver.” They say “I think I might be able to do this for you” and keep their referral partners informed of their progress along the way. They don’t make promises they can’t keep.
The third way to do give referrals, and the one Brennan recommends, is “Don’t promise, just deliver.” These people don’t talk about what they can do, they just do it. They take notes at every meeting about what kind of referrals everyone is looking for and go out and find those people. Then they surprise their fellow BNI members with great referrals. The key to this approach is attentive listening and good note-taking.
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