In the course of coaching professionals through the business development and career transition processes, new clients regularly allege that their networks aren't very strong. I ask them if they have ever introduced two professional connections. Most have not. To see how strong your network is, you have to exercise it.

I'm always eager to exercise my network. I'm quick to (re)introduce friends to Dean Vetsikas, my dear friend and trusted financial advisor, and Mike Gephart, our family's longtime accountant, when they are considering starting a family or a new business. My brilliant friend, Marija Ugrinich, MD, introduced me to an equally brilliant endicrinologist who's on his way to taming my fickle thyroid, totally improving my quality of life. I was able to connect an old friend, who had a very scary experience this summer, with my friend and trusted colleague James Bainbridge, who was able to protect  my friend and his client.

James and I share the saying "I got a guy for that." In fact, I think that James knows everyone between Norristown and Lansdale, and is happy to share (or exercise) his network whenever he can. He and Dean Vetsikas both make referrals part of their successful practices.

Are you making referrals to those in your network? If not, that could explain why you're not getting as many referrals as you'd like.

 "I got a guy for that" just means that you're exercising your network.