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Business Development

As someone who could be called a “jack-of-all-trades,” this definition from the GoBig Network makes great sense to me:

business development – n : business function focused on strategy, creating strategic partnerships and long-term relationships with suppliers and customers. The business development function within a business can be thought of as a jack-of-all-trades position focused on strategic deal-making with an eye toward increasing sales and expanding the company’s long-term business success or scope.

Adapted from "The CompanyCrafters Entrepreneur's Dictionary"
Copyright © 2004-2006 CompanyCrafters LLC

This is way more fun than simply sales, especially if it is just a cold call with no real on-going relationship possible at the other end. Business development can lead to the totally unexpected whereas simple sales is basically binary: They buy/they don’t.

I see the business development role as spreading value all around, like a Johnny Appleseed of business spreading seeds that sprout into fruit-bearing entities that make more sustenance available to everyone. As old Zig Ziglar put it in his Secrets of Closing the Sale in 1984, “You can get everything you want if you will just help enough other people get what they want.”

How can I help you in your business? Here are some clues:

  • I have been active in business development for the past 30 years.
  • I have bootstrapped several businesses into being on very limited budgets, including starting two publishing ventures by going around with a mock-up to show to potential advertisers and getting them to commit and prepay.
  • I helped recruit and lead a citizen’s diplomacy mission to the former USSR back in 1988 which was successful in establishing a personal growth educational program in, of all places, Tashkent, Uzbekistan. The connections made there led to a wholly different business venture in the 1990’s.
  • Another Soviet-era foray resulted in my providing the installation and training for a desktop publishing system in Kyiv in 1990.
  • Later in the 1990’s my efforts went in both directions as I helped send US agricultural equipment to the former Soviet Union and helped their entrepreneurs create a presence here.
  • In the 2000’s I focused primarily on financial services ranging from placing million dollar insurance policies as a financial advisor to helping get cleantech and real estate projects get financed as an investment banker.
  • I started VBFS by getting two website clients on board before I had ever built a website.

What kind of business instincts do you want working on your behalf?

Free Resources!

Some ideas on the topic:

Business Development Overview Business Development Overview (492 KB)