It surprises me how few people care to follow up. I try to make it a point to network with people and more importantly, learn from them. So if I get someone’s contact information, I usually shoot them a short message expressing my gratitude. If I work with a customer, I will send them an email to make sure everything went well. But I can say that of the many times I give my business card or personal information away, it’s rarely followed up on.
It goes beyond just people though. Businesses don’t follow up. The statistics for following up with leads from a trade show is abysmal. If I get scanned 100 times at a show, I’d expect maybe 10 follow ups. The B2B companies that I pay for whatever their service seldom call me back on the first try (especially if I have a problem). Now the way I see it, this is bad. Bad for businesses because they aren’t taking care of potential partners, or bad for me because no one wants to speak with me outside of my mother. Either way I’m not happy.
And it’s no good. At the end of the day when you are looking to get paid for your services, are trying to meet your quota or build a network, how likely are these people you neglected initially to pick up the phone?
Because it makes it seem like you don’t care; chances are that you do actually care. You’re just busy. Still, perception is reality. And if you don’t care, then honestly, why should anyone?