KEVIN O’FLAHERTY: We’re joined today by our guest Charles Hooker from Charles Home Inspection, and today we’re going to talk about building a referral network. So Charles, why don’t you tell us a little bit about your background and what you do before we dive into the topic.
CHARLES HOOKER: I’m Charles Hooker, Charles Home Inspection. My background is probably over 20 years in contract work and inspections -- Actually working on industrial site and manufacturing of safety inspections there and stepped out and opened my own business as Charles Home Inspection here -- actually out of Naperville but covering the western suburbs.
KEVIN O’FLAHERTY: Okay. And where do your referrals come from, or where does your business come from?
CHARLES HOOKER: My business comes from realtors. Realtors are my bread and butter of the business.
KEVIN O’FLAHERTY: So you’re not getting people to just find you on the Internet. You need a warm referral from a realtor.
KEVIN O’FLAHERTY: And our guest today is Jim Catalano from Catalano and Caboor and also The Music CPA. We had Jim’s dad, Jerry, on a couple episodes ago, and that quickly became one of our most popular lawyer episodes ever. I’m really happy to have Jim here.
Jim, why don’t you tell us about your role in the firm, and actually maybe give us a refresher on what Catalano and Caboor is all about too.
JIM CATALANO: Sure. I’m the marketing director for both entities; I’m in charge of the social networking and the websites as well as the networking groups and putting the name out for the firm.
KEVIN O’FLAHERTY: And I forgot to mention our topic today is going to be networking tips.
JIM WASZAK: Which brings me to a question: So today’s world everybody wants to do everything on social media, but there’s still a role for person-to-person networking, isn’t there?
JIM CATALANO: Indeed. Indeed, there is. It’s very important that -- Some of the younger crowds they don’t really -- They’re more about what’s on their smart phone. But the above 30 is really appreciative of person-to-person, and the biggest thing I’ve seen at networking groups is that always have a lot of business cards on hand either on your person or in your car. There’s so many times I’ve been in a networking group where I’ll be like, “Hey, can I have your card?”
“I ran out.” It’s like you can still maybe connect afterwards, and maybe they’ll send you an email; maybe they won’t.
JIM WASZAK: So, Lisa, tell us a little bit about what you do at Ruffled Feather. I know you’re the marketing person there, but --
LISA HUGHES: Absolutely. I’ve been there almost eight years, and what my job is there is to confirm and book golf events. We host about 120 golf outings throughout the golf season. Sometimes there’s a few in the day. Sometimes we don’t have any, but the goal is to really book business and sales. And over the years I’ve just been the contact for the marketing. I think it’s just I believe in marketing. I think it’s a squeaky wheel, good solution. I think it’s important to be out. People know that you’re there because if they don’t hear you constantly, then they kind of forget about you, and they’ll go to your competitor. So I get involved lot of in the marketing and--
JIM WASZAK: It seems to me one like one of the challenges would be how do you know who’s having an outing, you know?
LISA HUGHES: Absolutely. I get that question a lot actually. Like how do you –
JIM WASZAK: Because most companies need book keeping. They need Internet; they need lawyers. How do you know who needs an outing? It could be anybody.
LISA HUGHES: You’re absolutely right. A lot of people ask because a lot of my job is going out and finding business. It’s not necessarily banging on a door. You all know there’s a lot of golf courses in the Chicago areas for such a short season. However, not all accommodate outings. You have the banquet space available. It’s something that you either the business you go after, or you don’t.
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Kevin owns O’Flaherty Law, a general practice law firm with locations in Downers Grove, Elmhurst, and Naperville, Illinois. O'Flaherty Law's attorneys have expertise in many areas of law including but not limited to divorce and family law; civil litigation; estate planning; business and corporate representation; commercial and residential real estate law; elder services, probate and guardianship; immigration; bankruptcy law; and dui, traffic and criminal defense.
Jim owns Success Enhancement, Inc., which is geared toward helping you solve management problems in a way that is fun and engaging by using improv comedy techniques and role plays.
Participants will see how to behave differently in the type of situation identified as an area for improvement.
Please feel free to e-mail Jim at email@example.com or call him at (630)272-3895
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O'Flaherty Law has experience in legal services in the following legal practice areas: estate planning and probate; featuring wills and trusts, powers of attorney, living wills, estate tax avoidance and probate practice; real estate law; featuring commercial and residential sales and leases, foreclosure defense, short sales, REO closings and consent foreclosures, mechanic's liens and landlord and tenant disputes; family law; featuring divorces, child custody, child support, paternity, adoption and orders of protection; criminal law; featuring DUI, traffic and criminal defense; business representation; featuring entity selection, incorporation and s-corp election, bylaws and operating agreements, annual reports, annual meetings of shareholders, employment agreements, handbooks and warning and termination letters, business contracts, independent contractor agreements, trademarks and copyrights, regulation and licensing compliance and dissolution and mergers; business and personal bankruptcy; featuring Chapter 7, Chapter 11 and Chapter 13 cases; litigation; featuring commercial contract and tort law, employment and labor law, personal injury and collections; and immigration law.
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