Do you ever have instances when:
You have a great meeting with someone, they are really keen to get together again, but you have trouble scheduling a follow up?
People get busy. We all have a lot of things going on, and you just don’t become a priority to that other person.
How might you go about changing this?
Build response potential into your relationships.
Response potential is anything you can do to increase a person’s desire to reconnect with you.
So imagine in the previous example, in your initial meeting, at three different points, you simply mention some thing that you plan to share with them next time.
You might say, “Look, next time we get together I will share with you something that I think will blow your mind.”
Or, “This is an important topic that we have done a lot of work on, I have something back at the office that I will bring for you next time…”
Or, “I’m glad you asked that, I have a lot of thoughts we can pick up on next time.”
In doing this you have “pre-supposed” there will be a “next time” and also planted a few seeds for why they want to see you again.
It may not work, but you have at least given them some reasons to prioritize you.
This is a fairly overt tactic (at least in my book), and a more covert approach is to use the device that you hated when it was used on you when you were a kid.
You might have been about 20 minutes into that episode of The Brady Bunch, you know there is still too much of the story to unfold, and you dread what is coming.
That “To Be Continued…” almost guarantees you will show up again next week to watch the show. Even if you didn’t love the episode, inside your brain you have all these “open loops,” stories that aren’t finished, and your brain wants answers!
Your potential to respond and watch next week’s episode is almost guaranteed.
You can do the same thing in the way that you tell other people stories.
For instance, a few weeks ago when I walked into a meeting with a potential client after returning from living in Vail, when he asked me about my time there, I happily shared with him a story…up until a point.
For a minute I talked about how amazing it was to be living in the mountains doing what I love (for those of you who are versed in covert influence: driving him into the emotional state of adventure and embedding commands on doing what you love).
Then I slowed down my voice and gazed at him more directly and said, “You know there were so many wonderful things about living in Vail, but do you want to know the one thing that made it so special for me?”
Then, right there, when I had him salivating for my one thing, I stopped.
“Let’s not go into that right now, I will tell you about it next time I see you. We don’t have a lot of time together, so let’s get to the heart of what is going on with you.”
Whether or not he is thinking about it consciously, you can be sure that at some level he feels like he needs to see me again to hear about that one thing.
I have built in him response potential, increasing the likelihood he will keep responding to me.