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The BRICK Method of Business Development

July 27, 2014 |  by  |  Business Development

Building Your Network BRICK by BRICK

Successful accountants distinguish themselves with their technical skills by complying with processes and solving problems. Developing these skills through superior learning often pave the way to better careers. Ironically, progressive accounting firms also flourish by complying with processes and solving problems.  Specifically, the firm’s process and problem solving focus results in business development success.

Firms benefit from business development growth, but individual CPAs that embrace winning more clients are the real drivers. If you find an accountant experiencing business development success, you will see a professional with winning processes. Furthermore, an important element of the winning processes feature developing a strong network that yields additional, quality clients. Developing a strong professional network is similar to constructing a strongly built house.  Consequently, growth-oriented CPAs must build their professional networks BRICK by BRICK.

In this case BRICK is an acronym that highlights five key traits of developing a successful business network.

Breadth – A business network needs breadth, or in other words diverse sets of individuals and skills. Breadth opens doors to benefit from connections in different professional communities. A good business network offers access across business disciplines, industries and professions.

Reciprocity – The professionals within a network must understand that the purpose is to give and receive introductions and opportunities. Reciprocity does not necessarily mean that I give you one introduction, then you give me one introduction. It does mean that over time, we should equally benefit from introductions and opportunities between each other.

Investment – To benefit from the rewards of a successful business network, investing time and energy must be a priority. The investment includes actively identifying professionals that can help your business building efforts.  It also means cultivating the relationships by investing time in creating trust and credibility.

Communication – To maintain trust, credibility and relevance among your top networking contacts, professionals must consistently communicate with each other. Communication can take place by meeting, telephone, written notes, email, or social media. The successful networking professional wants to remain top of mind with key contacts.  That is accomplished by regular communication.

Knowledge – A successful network consists of professionals with superior knowledge. Not simply knowledgeable regarding their industry or discipline, but knowledgeable concerning networking. Each key member of the network must understand the importance and value in their best connections. Knowing the value of the relationships’ resources and how to treat them with respect makes it easier to continue to strengthen the network.

Firms that accomplish their growth goals are developing their firms with professionals who build their networks with The BRICK Method. The firm grows because the professionals grow. The professionals grow because they intentionally build relationships that lead to stronger practices. The results are better performing CPA firms with quality clients and well-respected business professionals.

About the Author:  Glenn W Hunter is an AuditSense instructor focusing on Business Development Training  and Consulting. As Principal of Hunter and Beyond, Glenn consults with entrepreneurs and professionals looking to grow their revenue. Additionally, he delivers workshops for college students and recent graduates in developing communication and networking skills

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