December 11, 2012

If a rug dealer made it, so can you!

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I wanted to share this amazing "living the American dream" story about a rug dealer, Pejman Nozad. From barely escaping Iran by charming his way into a military discharge, to moving to Germany, to arriving in the San Francisco Bay area with a mere $700 in the pockets, Pejman managed to become one of Silicon Valley's multi-millionaires. Now, why is that relevant? In my view, we're building Contactually to give every single user to chance to create that same success story -- or an even better one. You deserve it. So, let's see what we can learn from Pejman's journey.

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  • From early on, he genuinely cared about the people he me met.

  • He made curiosity one of his most prevalent personality traits, causing him him to listen and remember what important people said in their interactions.

  • Pejman became very skillful at asking meaningful questions that allowed him to increase his relevancy with these people in the future.

  • Whatever he learned, he probably recorded in what I like to call a "trusted system." The system itself can be as simple as a paperback notebook or your email client, or more functional like a small business CRM like Contactually. What made this unique was that could relay that all he needed to know was in this one place: his system of trust.

  • Pejman kept what some call a "beginner's mind," meaning his mind stayed open to new ideas, even if he didn't understand them at first.

  • He always offered help without expecting anything in return, and believed that good things will come to those who do good things.

  • Pejman connected people at a high rate of frequency, yet insured that all of the people involved always perceived it as valuable.

  • Finally, and maybe most importantly, he stayed real and genuine to who he was, even if people felt at times they were on "candid camera," as the article notes.


I've seen first-hand through my experiences that you'll find incredible success if you follow Pejman's lead. It might not be the same one-in-a-million story that we read about in Forbes, but you and I would much rather it be your own personal anecdote anyway. I would not be surprised if you achieve things you never thought possible. Without further ado, here are my top five ideas on how Contactually can help you follow in Pejman's footsteps.

1. When you are prompted to follow up, do not send the standard "just checking in, it's been a while" email. Think what could be of value or relevant to that person. Find something to talk about that's a good match for him or her.

2. When you meet people in person, listen intently and carefully. Be curious, and find out as much as you can about the person's challenges, passions and interests. Then, record it in a note on the person's contact profile in Contactually.

3. Your relationships with people always have a starting point. Make sure you enter information about how you met with rigorous discipline. Why should you do this? It will let you connect with people in the future that you might have lost touch with by simply referencing information about how you met.

4. Whenever you offered something of value or received the same, make a note of it in Contactually. That way, you can maintain a fool-proof memory of all value-based interactions that you've had with that contact.

5. Create a bucket of people that are new to you but have impressed you to a large degree -- you can call it the "Brilliant" bucket -- and set the reminder to 30 or 45 days. Make sure you act on the follow-up reminders when the time comes. They'll guide you to build strong relationships with the right people.

What other ways have you used Contactually to create your own success story? Tweet me @mindmavin or let me know in the comments section below.