One of the most important things you do as an entrepreneur is to build and maintain your network. I love meeting new people but also find it challenging to “upgrade” the first meeting into a meaningful relationship. I meet many smart and interesting people that I want to keep in touch with, but I don’t have time or headspace for offline networking.
When I was raising a seed round for my first startup, I met about 15-20 new people every week. So I maintained a personal CRM. Nothing fancy, just a simple Google spreadsheet. It wasn’t only for investors, but the funding round definitely triggered it.
I was logging every new person I met in a professional context. The only qualification was that I communicated with that person more than once, which weeded out about 90% of the people and helped me keep the list relevant.
After a few years, I had hundreds of people on that list. I was in regular (more than twice a year) contact with only 50-60 of them because they became my friends, partners or investors. I wanted to keep in touch with everyone.
One of my new year’s resolutions was to keep in touch with more people. So with some inspiration from Tim and Noah I did something about it. I built an upgrade to my spreadsheet that sends me a reminder every time I should reach out to one of my contacts.
I added a column stating when I should contact this person:
and wrote a simple script on Excel that sends me a reminder to contact this person on the chosen date. Don’t worry, you don’t need to do this part.
After using this tool for a few months, I actually became much better at staying in touch with people and was able to let the stay-in-touch bot do the memory heavy lifting.
I want you to get better at this important skill too. Get a copy of the tool and upgrade your professional life.
How To Use The Tool:
- Open the tool.
- Click File –> Make a Copy
- Click on Tools –> Script Editor
- Click on the little clock icon
- And click on “add one now”
- Then all you need to do is to change the events to “Day Timer” and hit “Save”.
- A window will appear, asking you to let the tool send you email notifications. Approve everything and you’re ready to go!
The next step is to integrate the spreadsheet with Linkedin and Facebook to get a reminder when a contact is changing jobs, having a kid, his company is being acquired etc.
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