Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Robin Jay - Art of the Business Lunch

1 - How did you get interested in the topic that’s featured in your book? I sold advertising (TV, RADIO & PRINT) for 18 years. Because of the nature of my work, I usually had a business lunch booked three or four days a week. Put that together with breakfasts, mixers and networking events and it wasn’t long before I was booked weeks in advance.

When it came time to write my first book, I decided to write about that. I wanted to help other people by sharing what I know about building high-level business relationships by introducing a social aspect – usually lunch – into the relationship.

2 - Tell us a bit about your background. What have you done in the past that relates to your book and that topic? I sold advertising for 18 years. During that time, I learned a lot of tricks and techniques that I knew would be helpful to other business professionals. I had been on more than 3,000 client lunches and I saw my sales increase by more than 2,000%! My clients started calling me “The Queen of the Business Lunch.”

3 - What advice would you give to someone who is interested in your topic? I am a professional speaker. I enjoy speaking to all types and sizes of groups and helping others to discover “The Art of the Business Lunch”! With preparation, people can learn how to build solid, long-lasting relationships. Relationships are, by nature, sequential. There is nothing more sequential than a meal. Learning how to be prepared to socialize with clients is knowledge that will help anyone in any business. There is a lot of infor ma tion in my book on how to conduct a successful business lunch, as well as what anyone should know about a job interview business lunch, networking luncheons and events and even basic business etiquette.

4 - What do you see as the benefit to participating in groups and organizations? My first thought would be networking opportunities and the chance for personal and business growth. What are your reasons?

We become valuable for WHO we know. The more people in your network, the more successful you will be. No one succeeds all by themselves. And it’s a wonderful experience to meet and share with like-minded individuals.

5 - Who is the ideal person to read your book? If each person that reads this was going to recommend your book to one person, what sort of person would they want to chose? Anyone in sales or who has a relationship-based business. My book offers nuts-and-bolts methods for creating successful, long-lasting business relationships.

6 - What do you think ignites a person’s creativity? I believe it’s finding one’s passion. We can try ma ny things to get our creativity going…but we ned to find that one thing that ma kes time fly for us. When we become so engrossed in what we are doing, we have found our bliss. If you can earn a living doing that thing, then you are engaged in the ulti ma te creative endeavor.

7 - What have you found to be the biggest stumbling block for people who want to start writing? As Yoda said, “There is no try; you do or you do not.” My brother Barry used to quote Star Wars logic to me whenever applicable. This phrase is brilliant. If someone wants to write, (or start writing, as you put it), then they need to start writing! They ma y decide to take a class if they are unsure about how to begin. They can write a page a day – or three pages a week. They need to learn to set goals and then meet them. The book is not going to write itself. The hardest part for me was writing while I was still working a 60+ hour week. I needed to be at my desk writing by Sunday at 12PM. It was a challenge, but it was the only way I was going to get my book written. Once you are able to write professionally, it actually gets easier.

8 - How would you suggest they can overcome that? For this, I will quote NIKE: “Just do it.” Designate a time each day to write. Get in the habit of writing.

9 - What do you find is the biggest motivator for people to succeed? Is it money, security, desire for fame or something else? We each have different hot buttons. For some, it’s obviously ego. For others, it’s the need to say something. If you’re writing for money, keep your day job and just write checks! That’s the fastest way to write for money!

10 - Who is the “perfect” person to read your book? Anyone in sales or who has a relationship-based business. Also, anyone who ma y be looking to change jobs. The chapter on the job interview business lunch is packed with helpful tips.

11 - Is there anything else you would like to share with us? If you’ve ever suffered through an awkward lunch or networking event the information in my book can help you. It’s universal. We all have challenges with social situations. I share easy, tangible ways to become more effective in business and in life.
You can visit her website at http://www.robinjay.com/ and her blog at www.robinjay.com/blog.

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