The "Excuse Me" Affect: #Blog4Biz Day 14:

"Excuse me.....". We excuse ourselves for many different reason. One of those reasons is as an introduction to someone we don't know. "Excuse me" implies you are seeking forgiveness for intruding on someone's time or space uninvited. 

Today someone said those words to me, and I said those words to someone and I learned a valuable lesson in BRAVERY.

I was visiting a new church this morning. After service, a nice woman came up to me and said "Excuse me, my name is Wanda."  I introduced myself and we began the usual talk. Are you new here? What brings you here? What do you do? 
I decided to give my newly practiced elevator speech a test run. It had the effect I wanted it to. It was intriguing enough for her to show genuine interest to open the door for more conversation. That's exactly what happened. Turns out in addition to having a passion for the arts, we have businesses in the same vein and will be meeting together to build community. She doesn't have that many people to talk to about business things locally and neither do I since I am new in town. We decided it might be good for us to learn together. 

That all started with an "excuse me..."

She told me I should connect with another individual named Terry. I assumed when Wanda and I got together she'd tell me more about Terry. She gave me his descriptions and I filed it away.

As I was leaving the parking lot, I saw a man who fit the description of Terry. He was walking to his car. "Excuse me" I yelled over the din of the gravel crunching under his rolling carry on. He didn't hear me. "Excuse me, sir". He turned around. "Are you Terry?". He affirmed he was. Then I began with I am and who told me to talk to him. I had a different goal in mind for Terry. My goal was to see if he was willing to engage in conversation about business building. Turns out Terry is a full time professional in an area I have interest in. We talked for 20 minutes and he is an amazing business connection to have. 

That all started with an "excuse, me"...actually that one started with 2 because he didn't hear me the first time!

Today's challenge was to think of 5 people in my LinkedIn network that I'd like to one day turn into clients. Then come up with a strategy for meeting them or getting introduced.

I initially struggled with challenge...that is until I had time to reflect on my conversations with Wanda and Terry. I don't know what, if anything, will come from my conversations with those two today. All I know is that I have a part to play. I have the responsibility to reach out to them. Their response is not my responsibility. That is the lesson I learned today and encapsulates my strategy for the 3 contacts I chose in my LinkedIn network. 

I picked people who are in each area of business. Prospect #1 is for the coaching side of my business. I picked a person who an independent sales consultant. My approach for her is to show how I can help her turn irate customers into customers for life with my communication strategy coaching. 

Prospect #2 is for the training workshop side of my business. I picked a person who is the communications and programs manager for a educational service center. My approach for this person is show how my communication skills workshops can increase her attendance rates since communication skills can be applied to anyone in her organization and community. It could give her huge cross over appeal.

Prospect #3 is for the professional speaking side of my business. My approach to this contact is a little different. The goal for me here is actually not to get a speaking gig, my goal is get to know "a connector". A connector is one who knows many people and usually makes introductions.  I want him as a connector in the industry since he is already known.  

I chose these three prospects for different reason but my strategy for all of them is going to be the same.

I'll start with "excuse me...

Like I tell my clients, I will prepare before I initiate my conversation but the point is to reach out and be BRAVE enough to take the initiative. If it doesn't work out, I will review the situation for ways I could improve going forward. If it works out, I will move forward.

The point is "Audentis Fortuna Iuvat", Fortune Favors the BRAVE!

The Living BRAVE blog re-launches on Aug 1, 2013. During July, however, I accepted the #Blog4Biz daily business blogging challenge. The challenge is designed to help business owners focus on certain aspects of blogging that will expand their skill, boost creativity, and focus their message. Initially, I wasn't going to publicly share my posts, but as I started writing these posts, I saw the value in sharing...and some of this stuff is really good!  If you want to join the challenge, click here.

Word Count: 780 


  1. What a beautifully written post Julia. Yes, who knows what's going to happen. You must keep us posted about Terry and Wanda.

    1. Thank you Caroline. Yes, I will keep you posted. I was inspired by you and your sisters story. I got my first tutorial, now to sit down and watch :)