All of us have heard the term “happy hour”.
To most, it has become a cherished time that signals the end of the workday.
Much like when Fred Flintstone heard the whistle and immediately yelled “Yabba Dabba Dooo” and sped off in the Flint Mobile. For most, it’s quitting time.
One beer company even put their brand name on it. Yup! It’s Miller time and the champagne of beer allows you to celebrate even the most mundane accomplishments.
For most, “happy hour” has become synonymous with reduced prices for both food and your favorite adult beverage, and a place where you can let your hair down (not so easy for us bald guys).
While most people are resigned to the fact that the workday is over, for true hunters, this is where the adventure really begins.
Often you hear sales folks suggest, “hey, let’s meet for happy hour”, which presents the perfect opportunity to mix business and pleasure. For me, it’s the time and place where I have met some of the greatest people who have then turned into some of the biggest deals I have been involved in.
I frequently visit establishments during this “hour” and always arrive to stake out my spot at the bar and have high expectations about the opportunity to meet and develop new relationships.
People are generally talking, sharing stories, laughing, and enjoying the human experience.
In fact, when Michelle and I go out for dinner, we prefer sitting at the bar as the randomness of chance encounters have become a backbone of our networking efforts.
This all prompted me to think back to some of the things that have always worked for me and the things that have helped create my success.
For me, I have always lived in the mindset that every hour is “happy hour”.
Being social is such a crucial component of success.
Here are two recent examples that fit into the “you never know” department.
First, during the most recent hurricane that blew through South Florida (we were fortunate enough to have it miss us), many of the local residents headed out to one of our favorite spots to grab a drink and something to eat.
As I said, Michelle and I, and a few of our friends, promptly headed to the bar and, as we approached, one of the couples saw that if they moved to the end of the bar our whole party could all sit together, which we did.
I started up a conversation, shared a few stories, and, finally as they were leaving, we exchanged information and suggested we get together again some time.
Of course, I followed up (rule # 26), connected on all the social media channels, and continued to stay in touch.
This past Saturday night, we took some friends to The Breakers and the restaurant was slammed. I approached the hostess and was told that it would be an hour or so wait to which I then asked if one of the managers was around.
He was and he quickly noticed us, gave us a big welcome, and quickly went about getting us a table.
You guessed it, he was the guy we met that hurricane night and, by the way, his wife heads up National Sales and has suggested she can help me get connected to the many conventions that come to the Breakers. Not bad for a random connection at a bar, right?
Second, we met a guy standing at the bar one night, he mentions he likes my blazer, we strike up a conversation, and he turns out to have recently retired as the #2 guy at MetLife.
Prior to him leaving, we exchanged business cards which then followed up with a coffee meeting and we are actively working on deals together. Incredible!
Here’s the takeaway – there is nothing random about any of this. It’s deliberate and intentional, and if you think and act like every hour is “happy hour” you too will create great relationships that will make your life more meaningful.
And that’s what Nudelberg says….