The last few months I’ve noticed something that may have been going on longer than just the last few months.

Here’s that something:

The number of people who know me and see me face to face in “unplanned meets” has become substantial.

Let me define “unplanned meets“.

I fill my week with planned meetings such as a business meeting, lunch meeting, or even church is a planned meeting. Other times when I see someone that I know but we did not plan on being at the same place at the same time, that’s what I’m calling an “unplanned meet“.

Not everyone you meet is real

I’ve been back in my hometown of Fort Wayne for 18 1/2 years.  But it wasn’t until 2003 that I started working in the advertising sales world in Fort Wayne. Ten years later, 2013 was when I joined WOWO Radio and Federated Media.  Part of that job is to meet people. And while I’m sure that has been part of it, there are others that I’ve been having “unplanned meets” with that are not related to my working life.

Last week I was at the Fort Wayne Home and Garden Show and had a few people come up to me and say hi.  Not the, you look familiar, but I don’t know who you are kind of hi, but folks who remembered my name and details about the last time or even first time we met.

The week before I was attending a Fort Wayne Komets hockey game and a couple people did the same.  Sometimes it’s at a place I go to regularly but just as often it’s someplace I rarely show up at.

Apparently there is some kind of momentum that happens on a personal level that is similar to the kind of momentum that most businesses want to have happen with their advertising and marketing. It’s Not WHO YOU Know, but who KNOWS YOU that makes the difference in the success of your business and also in personal lives too.

It’s not a fame thing either.  A few years ago when my sister-in-law moved to town, she remarked that my wife and I must be famous because everywhere we went, people knew us.  No, we just took her to some of our favorite spots in this city and people at those places were familiar with us.

There was a time when these “unplanned meets” were rare.  Now it occurs several times each week.  People that I have not spoken with in years, or even decades are popping up.  Sometimes they are reaching out to me on Social Media, not Face to Face but that’s a bit different.

While I’ve been talking about my personal experience today, I’m just using it as an observation.  This is not really about me… It’s about the lesson all of us can take away from this observation and apply to our business and personal lives.

That lesson is it takes work and effort to build positive relationships.  Positive relationships where people make an effort to stop and say hi & talk with you when they see you unexpectedly.  Do it enough and with integrity and one day you will see the return in ways you never imagined.  You and your company can flourish if you build it on a strong foundation.

If you want some help and guidance, reach out to me.