“Do the thing that scares you” With Candice Georgiadis & Lucia E. Robles

Do the thing that scares you. Do the thing that you are resisting! Every. Day. If you continually push yourself beyond your comfort zone you will find yourself in a whole new stratosphere of a life and business you only dreamed was possible. As part of my series of interviews about “How to Use LinkedIn To […]

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Do the thing that scares you. Do the thing that you are resisting! Every. Day. If you continually push yourself beyond your comfort zone you will find yourself in a whole new stratosphere of a life and business you only dreamed was possible.

As part of my series of interviews about “How to Use LinkedIn To Dramatically Improve Your Business”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Chef Lucia E. Robles.

Chef Lucia E. Robles is the president and co-founder of Lucia & Co., a high-end luxury gourmet business gift company that specifically works with businesses and specializes in working with business owners who have spending regulations on client gifts. Her firm provides automated, done-for-you custom gift services along with concierge gift services to help business owners achieve consistent client appreciation marketing, team appreciation and consistent prospect outreach. An honors graduate of the California School of Culinary Arts Le Cordon Bleu Program in Pasadena, California she says. I love hearing about the successes and growth our clients experience, the visibility they receive and how happy their clients are, really feeling so deeply appreciated.”

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?

My love of food, entertaining, and connecting with people is what has brought me to this evolution of my career. The joy I get in building relationships with people and getting to know people is what has brought me here. I know a lot of people struggle with letting their thoughtfulness shine through in their own unique way, so it really is my pleasure to help people make better and more consistent connections with their clients, colleagues, and referral partners. Gifting is fun for me and the message included with the gift can really push it into another stratosphere of success. I love helping our clients with their gift messages. Before culinary school, I went to school for English Literature with a minor in Theater Arts because I love Shakespeare, reading, and writing. Who knew that this is how I would use it? At the end of the day, I really wanted to be able to look back and say, “Yes, I really did give it everything I’ve got, I turned over every stone, followed up and played full-out.”

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started this career?

We’ve had to pivot a few times and we’ve gone through some rebrands. But on the more recent forefront, I’d say maybe it was finally embracing social media! I know that perhaps that sounds funny because it’s been around for so long, but it’s true. I really was the last shoe to drop. It just wasn’t my thing. I had this whole mindset around it being extremely time consuming. Why would anyone want to see a picture of my bowl of Froot Loops that I ate that morning?

But, what if I was wrong and could find success with social media, and a lot of success to boot? That was a question I had in the back of my head for a long time. So I decided to change my mind, think differently about it, get a system in place, really embrace it and all it offers, specifically LinkedIn. I had a feeling we would be successful leveraging that platform, I just never dreamed that by changing my mind, developing a system along the way that I would be adding over $100,000 to our bottom line that year. It blew my mind! I think that alone is a huge testament to how we do business, the need many businesses have for our services, and how big of an impact social media done correctly can have on your business. It’s also very gratifying to be working with people I really want to work with who are, in turn, excited to work with us. We are really very fortunate we get to work with top notch professionals who really are the best in their field. I really enjoy connecting with each of them, working with them and hearing about what’s going on in their businesses and in their lives. To then to be able to repeat that again and again has been amazing!

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

When I was first starting I was totally gung-ho on networking crazy-style and I was really good at it. I would go, meet people, collect business cards and then follow up accordingly. After attending an event, I was so excited to call and talk to the people I had met the day before that I picked up this guy’s business card and decided I would call him first. It went to voicemail so I left a message. It wasn’t until I was leaving my callback number at the end that I realized that although my intention was to call this gentleman I had met, apparently because my eyeballs were wandering around the room, I left a message for an entirely different person, a woman at the event instead! Somewhere in dialing and waiting for an answer I was looking at the other business cards and without thinking left a message on his voicemail, with her name and all!

Which social media platform have you found to be most effective to use to increase business revenues? Can you share a story from your experience?

I’ve dabbled in all of them and played with paid ads but it always comes back to LinkedIn. Although I have clients and colleagues following us on Instagram and Facebook, LinkedIn is where I most effectively connect with people, meet new people, and refer people. I’ve always referred to it as the Facebook of business, but better.

I think it’s important to mention that part of the reason I’ve been so successful using LinkedIn is because I genuinely enjoy connecting with people, developing relationships, and the sales process in general. I think it’s important because if someone doesn’t really embrace the process, not only will they get frustrated, but they will likely come off as disingenuous as well.

A great example would be the daily alerts LinkedIn sends you. Every day in your notifications there is someone who’s having a birthday. If you know them, reach out, but especially if you don’t know them, take the quick minute to wish them a happy birthday. It’s literally two seconds of your time if you just hit the pre-filled greeting of “Happy Birthday!” that they provide. You’d be surprised what can come of that, but it really does need to come from a genuine place of wanting to wish someone well. It’s fun! One of the last times I did that, the person ended up chatting it up with me via LinkedIn messages on a Saturday no less, we hopped on the phone later that week really hitting it off. As a result, I gained both a new friend and a new client.

Lets talk about LinkedIn specifically, now. Can you share 5 ways to leverage LinkedIn to dramatically improve your business? Please share a story or example for each.

Wow! I will do my best to keep it only to 5, however just know there is really a lot more to this.

  1. LinkedIn is a networking social media platform for professionals, so treat it that way. When I was getting started with it, I made it a point to carve out time on my calendar for LinkedIn every day. I still do that to this day. Take it seriously and be consistent. Be professional and be polite. Behave the way you would if you were standing in front of the person. It’s a smaller world than you think. The way you start off here can really plant a seed with someone as to whether they will want to work with you or not. In person or online, a first impression is still a first impression.
  2. Keep your profile current with a good clear profile photo of yourself that accurately represents you. It doesn’t bode well to not have a profile pic up. Remember, people may choose whether or not they want to connect with you based on how complete your profile is and if you have a profile photo up. I personally do not connect with people who don’t have completed profiles or profile photos because it feels like they’re hiding something. It also reflects back on your overall effort if you don’t have a complete profile. Remember this is social media with an emphasis on social. So be social!
  3. If you are going to invite people to connect with you, be sure to include a message if you can. Often, it will have a pop-up box that offers you the opportunity to add a personalized message. Do it. However, if you are connecting from your Network page, you won’t get that opportunity. So, in that case, as soon as the person connects with you, send them a message. Be upfront and friendly, and let them know why you wanted to connect with them. If you never say anything or if they message you first and you give off a one word answer like ‘Thanks!’ it comes off as though you are connecting with them just to add to your number of connections. On the flip side of this, don’t send a thesis long message either! Relationships are built little bits at a time. Be concise and friendly in your messages and as you build or they ask questions, then take the opportunity to expand further.
  4. If you are on a paid version of LinkedIn, use the filters to help you search for your ideal connections. This can really help you get in front of the right person the first time around. If you are not on a paid version, there are ways to work around it and still make powerful connections. This is a great place to connect directly and circumvent a lot of channels that would normally stand in your way.
  5. Be sure to set up a company page so you can share different things about your business. You can share company stuff on your personal page as well, but also use your personal page as a way of sharing a little bit about who you are so people can get to know you. If you don’t have a business and work for someone, connect yourself with the company page and still share company posts on your page. It’s important to let people know what you are up to so that they can get to know who you are and what you do.

Because of the position that you are in, you are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

Do the thing that scares you. Do the thing that you are resisting! Every. Day. If you continually push yourself beyond your comfort zone you will find yourself in a whole new stratosphere of a life and business you only dreamed was possible.

Some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US with whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this if we tag them 🙂

Today? Right now? I’d love to meet with Barbara Corcoran — I love her story and how she over came some serious setbacks to become the great success and influencer that she is today. She’s truly an inspiration of what you can become if you want it badly enough. I would welcome an opportunity to be in her orbit any day.

Thank you so much for these great insights. This was very enlightening!

Thank you for the opportunity!

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