Over the weekend, during the panel of media professionals sharing with MMM participants how to pitch them directly, I asserted that I would never just send a random pitch to one of the reporters there because she is my friend and I want to make sure it is perfectly suited for what she covers.

I should have corrected myself then. Every single person on that panel of eight is someone I have taken the time to get to know, to have coffee with, to listen to, so that if and when I send a pitch about something I’d like them to cover, I don’t waste their time unnecessarily.

And that’s an important distinction.

Not taking advantage of our friends, acquaintances and contacts is key in any business. I am in the world of relationships – building relationships strategically and thoughtfully in partnership with my clients and my team. That’s what makes business grow. Any business.

I do practice what I preach. It’s all about what I can do for someone else and yes, I know that means one day they’re likely to grant me a favor or work with me to my benefit, too. It’s about back and forth. Mutual benefit. Really that’s all it’s about.

If you think you’re in business to drive up sales and pad your pockets, you’re in a sad state. It’s not about that. Abundance comes when authenticity reigns. It’s that simple. Easy formula for success. Give first and you shall receive.

So at that table were representatives of eight great media outlets in metro Detroit. All hard-working journalists with deadlines and yelling bosses and demands and requests. Tons of people want their attention. Tons of people ask them every day to feature their special story. Tons of people are turned down.

I feel lucky to know these folks – not just because they can feature my clients in their news coverage. But because they are cool, unique, talented people whom I count among my friends. And it’s from that place that we interact in business.

How can I help? Sure I’ll do you a favor. No problem. I am here to serve.

Now let’s get that cup of coffee.

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