When Andrew Larsen toured a manufacturing facility in the Seattle area, he noticed they were using tiny brass pieces in part of their process.
"Those are made on a Swiss Screw, right?" he asked. "Who makes them for you?"
Andrew wasn't touring the business to take an inventory of parts. He was there to get to know and understand the business. It just so happened he had been getting to know another business the previous week, a Swiss Screw manufacturer in Kent, WA, that was in a tough spot. It had ramped up for a big job by hiring staff and bringing in new machines to increase capacity, but the job was canceled and they were now struggling to keep their staff working. So when Andrew saw the little brass pieces at the Seattle facility, a light bulb went off in his head.
"We were able to put the two companies in touch," said Andrew. "It ended up shortening their supply chain. It created work for the one manufacturer and it shortened up the lead time for the other manufacturer, so it was a win-win for those two companies."
Business Development vs. Sales
This is what Andrew does. Think of him as a switchboard for businesses and nonprofits. He gets to know leaders and their organizations, and makes connections that can help.
"It's 100 percent relational," he said. "I'm not selling anything. I'm not selling a product, I'm developing relationships. I'm asking questions and I'm understanding needs and then I'm keeping an inventory in our system and in my own brain of needs versus capabilities to meet those needs. So then, when we find a match, we're able to put them together."
Andrew learned about OneAccord years ago when he was working for the Association of Washington Business. He talked with founder Jeff Rogers and made a lasting impression.
"Andrew has the unique ability to connect professional relationships with others that make sense for them," said Jeff. " As founder of OneAccord, what attracted me to Andrew is a deep values alignment in bringing meaningful and aligned relationships together to add value for them. From our first meeting, when Andrew was serving AWB, I saw his ability to dig in to what we did and where we wanted to go as a company, and then he started making introductions — rather than focusing on the sale of his service. From that first meeting, I was interested in working with Andrew."
Early this year, Andrew reached out to Jeff. Little did he know, Jeff had just completed intense strategic planning with his leadership team, and one of the things that came out of that planning was the company's need for a person on the team focused exclusively on business development. Andrew, in turn, was drawn to the OneAccord way.
“Putting the value and the service first really resonated with me," he said. "Getting to know OneAccord and the purpose of serving these employers — these business owners who are at a stage in life where they have given a lot to their company and their employees and are looking to transition — and being able to provide a service to them, it felt worthy of my effort.”
And best of all, neither Jeff nor Andrew were interested in making business development a glorified sales position.
“When I call someone, I want to hear their story and where they’re at,” said Andrew. “Jeff and I share the viewpoint that sometimes it’s not the right time to do business. We’re not here to do business for the sake of doing business. We do business only if we can provide service. That's business development versus sales."
How Can Andrew Serve You?
Andrew's DNA, core values and heart all align with OneAccord in desiring to serve our community and we’d appreciate the opportunity for him to do so with you. I invite you to connect with Andrew to explore how we can add value for your organization.
"People can call me directly to start the exploration process," said Andrew. "Let’s just talk. Let’s find out what your potential is and see if it's appealing to you.”