On The Shelves: “Rain Making, 2nd Edition: Attract New Clients No Matter What Your Field,” By Ford Harding

Rain Making: Attract New Clients No Matter What Your Field 2nd Edition


Rain Making, 2nd Edition:  Attract New Clients No Matter What Your Field. By Ford Harding. Avon:  Adams Business, 2008. 314 pages.  $14.95 (paperback).

One of seven books on the Society for Marketers of Professional Services (SMPS) “Suggested Reading to Prepare for Certification” list, Ford Harding’s book, Rain Making, 2nd Edition:  Attract New Clients No Matter What Your Field, is the precursor to his later book:  Creating Rainmakers:  The Manager’s Guide to Training Professionals to Reach New Clients, which is also on the study guide list of books to review.  The 2nd Edition is a 2008 revision of the earlier book published in 1994.  The 2008 edition includes five completely new chapters and substantial additions to other chapters.  The book is divided into four parts, with the first three parts including seven chapters in each unit. Part I discusses marketing tactics and provides an outline for how professionals build reputations and generate leads.  Part II takes the next step in guiding the reader in how to develop a sustainable source of leads, while Part III addresses more specifically how to advance and close a sale.  The concluding Part IV guides from tactics to strategy and includes ideas that work and those that do not.

Having previously read the second book in the series, I was somewhat disappointed in this prequel.  Although the book was updated in 2008 and the information is relevant, technological advances are not current with regards to the techniques for developing and maintaining networks. (Social Media, SmartPhones, Tablets, etc.) While the book is geared more practically to Principals, Partners and Thought Leaders within a firm, the reality of engaging these targeted groups to read this somewhat dry offering could be challenging to business development staff.  Of particular interest is Chapter 9:  Special Rules for Special Networks:  Trade Associations, Formal Networking Groups, and Internal Networks.  There are very tangible and practical tips for selecting group memberships, following up on contacts made at events and leveraging relationships to meet appropriate prospects.  Chapter 26 covers “Simple Strategies That Can Help You Now.”   I particularly appreciated the concept of LEVERAG(ing) YOUR LIMITED TIME.  This section discusses how to make one activity translate into another activity.  For example, increase your deliverable options by using a speech or presentation as the basis for an article.

This book is not for the faint of heart, although the information is very useful.  I think that it would best be absorbed by possibly offering a workshop or seminar with key leadership within the firm to practice and outline suggested techniques.  Breaking the content down into small bite size pieces would increase retention and more importantly adoption.  Perhaps an incentive system to encourage practice and tracking within your client resource management system would provide the types of results that makes management smile.



Julie Woodman, CPSM | Business Development


p: 602-821-7611|


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February 14th Marketing Council Wrap-Up: Creating Award Submittals That Win

Posted by smpsarizona on February 18, 2014
Awards, Construction, Design, Engineering, Marketing/PR, Organizations / No Comments
Peter Madrid Communications Specialist Cushman and Wakefield of Arizona, Inc.

Peter Madrid
Communications Specialist
Cushman and Wakefield of Arizona, Inc.




When it comes to creating award-winning submittals, those three elements are crucial and could make all the difference in the world.

That was the message delivered at the SMPS Arizona February Marketing Council Friday morning event at Adolfson & Peterson’s Tempe office by Peter Madrid, Communications Specialist for Cushman & Wakefield of Arizona.

Peter spent three years as editor of Arizona Commercial Real Estate (AZRE) magazine and was an integral part of the submittal and judging process for the RED Awards. In his current role, he is now charged with compiling award submittals for both RED Awards and Best of NAIOP. He has straddled both sides of the fence, so to speak.

Among the highlights of which Peter spoke:

>> Community: It is imperative that submittal narratives make mention of how each project impacts the community in which they reside. We in the industry see a new community center in terms of its design, engineering and construction. An underserved neighborhood sees it as a community meeting place; a safe after-school alternative for the children; a place to learn a new skill; etc.

>> Culture: Just as a sense of community is important, so is a sense of culture. Peter mentioned that some projects, namely those built on Native American land, take on an even bigger role for the people whom they serve. Narratives should be written in such a way that they reflect this importance as well.

>> Collaboration: This could also easily be called communication, Peter said. The entities involved – developer, architect, engineer, general contractor, etc. – will all most certainly submit a nomination packet for a specific project. Getting the marketing departments to work together on the submittal can be as challenging as the architect and GC working together on the actual project. But it can be done – through strong communication.

Other pointers Peter shared: Follow instructions to the letter. If the submittal asks for images on a CD, don’t send prints. Meet the contest deadline, don’t ask for an extension. And remember, it’s never too early to start gathering info for next year’s competitions.

On the night of the show, make sure the person who accepts the award thanks everyone involved – most importantly the marketing team.

Peter Madrid, Communications Specialist, Cushman and Wakefield of Arizona


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Reflecting on SMPS University – It’s a Career Changer

Posted by smpsarizona on January 24, 2014
Construction, Design, Engineering, Marketing/PR, Professional Development / No Comments
Grenee Celuch, CPSM SMPS Arizona President Elect Director of Marketing & Business Development, Concord Contracting

Grenee Celuch, CPSM
SMPS Arizona President Elect
Director of Marketing & Business Development, Concord Contracting

Reflecting on SMPS University – It’s a Career Changer

First of all, I want to personally thank each and every Fellow for raising money at Build Business for a Fellows scholarship to SMPS University. When applying for the scholarship it was easy to write about how SMPS has impacted my career and what the organization brings to me on both a personal and professional level. I can honestly say I don’t think I would be where I am today without the people, support and education I have gained. Just when I thought SMPS had impacted me in every way, I was once again amazed after returning home from SMPS University.

Learning so much from the program I am now challenged with choosing what to implement into my firm, while still having time to do my everyday responsibilities. For 2014, I have decided to conduct a service blueprint for every department within my firm. This includes preconstruction/estimating, operations, finance/human resources, front desk, and of course marketing/business development. I just completed the blueprint for business development and can already see ways we can improve from the customer’s point of view! Additionally, with the knowledge and research at my fingertips, personally I am focused on becoming a stronger leader within my organization. It’s the perfect start to a new year – service blueprinting will strengthen my organization’s customer service on all levels and a personal goal of moving from being a “manager” to a “leader”!

While I expect our service blueprint to change the way we do business over time, SMPS U gave me the skills to change my day-to-day thought process and routines immediately. In the world of general contracting, the schedule and budget are king. You make schedule and budget – we call it a success! While it is a success, SMPS U demonstrated how we could use creativity of the project team to go from “status quo” to superstars. Learning about the case studies from Autodesk and IDEO it changed the way I storyboard during proposal and presentation meetings – pushing our team from meeting the requirements to solving our customer’s problems they may not even recognize!

Last but not least, I learned finance. While I’m still trying to grasp how to calculate the NPV on a CLV, I take pride in actually understanding the mathematical equation of retaining current customers. Additionally, I have the confidence to participate in financial discussions during our monthly leadership meetings and the ability to calculate my ROI within the marketing budget. This is priceless – no pun intended!

I truly had no idea the impact this program would have on me and have no doubt that it gave me the tools necessary to be a future CMO and potential owner of my firm. I recommend SMPS U to any person looking to advance their career and gain personal and professional development that will benefit you and your firm for years. It truly was a career changer for me and gave me the tools to make my company stand out within the professional services industry!


Grenee Celuch, CPSM, SMPS Arizona 2014 President Elect

Director of Marketing and Business Development, Concord General Contracting, Inc.

* Originally published in the SMPS Connections Newsletter and on *

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Affordable Senior Community Opens in Youngtown

Posted by Kimberly Mickelson on November 04, 2013
Construction / No Comments

Englewood Development Company, Inc. announces a new affordable senior housing community in Youngtown, Arizona. Aurora Village is a 3-story building with 65 spacious one and two bedroom units. Amenities include an interior community space, green features, solar, BBQ grills, a picnic area, perimeter fencing and carports.

Aurora Village was collaboratively designed by Greg M. Zimmerman, Architect. Mountain Trace Development, LLC with DECCA Multi-Family Builders, Inc., constructed Aurora Village located at 12238 N. 113th Avenue, Youngtown, Arizona 85363.

The Arizona Department of Housing, National Equity Fund, Inc. an affiliate of LISC, Bank of America-Merrill Lynch, the Town of Youngtown and Youngtown Senior Housing LLC provided generous support for Aurora Village.
The community is invited to the Grand Opening of Aurora Village on Wednesday, November 6, 2013. Enjoy an open house, live jazz, BBQ and self-guided property tours beginning at noon.
Please RSVP to

Village Management Company professionally manages the property. For leasing information, call 623-923-5700.

About Englewood Development Company, Inc and Mountain Trace Development, LLC.
Englewood Development Company, Inc. (Englewood) was founded in Indianapolis in 1974, and since that time has risen to be a prominent developer in the Midwest as well as in Arizona since its arrival in the state in 1998. Aurora Village is Englewood’s 73rd affordable housing community, and the delivery of this project brings the total number of units developed in Arizona to 908. Englewood is experienced in both urban and rural development with 2,800+ units contributed to the nation’s supply of affordable housing. Englewood and its affiliated family of companies, The Englewood Group (which includes Mountain Trace Development, LLC and Village Management Company), also provide property management and compliance services for completed communities and will be responsible for the lease up and management of Aurora Village. See to learn more.

About Greg M. Zimmerman, Architect
Greg M. Zimmerman, Architect has over 30 years of experience in affordable housing development, planning, program development, advocacy, policy analysis, community development and nonprofit management. He has secured, closed, and managed projects with a wide range of funding sources, including Low-Income Tax Credits, bank financing, state and local government funding, bond financing, and HUD funding. With a great understanding of complex projects and his professional experience coordinating multiple agencies, departments, and consultants routinely results in successfully funded and completed affordable housing. See www. to learn more.

About DECCA Multi-Family Builders, Inc.

DECCA Multi-Family Builders, Inc. is part of the DECCA family of independently operated, family owned general contracting corporations and is the contracting corporation that specializes in multi-family/apartment construction. Aurora Village is DECCA’s 14th affordable housing community built together with Mountain Trace Development, LLC, and the delivery of this project brings the total number of units completed to 791. DECCA’s experience, reputation and integrity span nearly three decades of building across the southwestern United States. DECCA offers a full array of services ranging from design/build and conceptual cost estimating to onsite construction management and dedicated customer service. See to learn more.

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Montessori Charter School to offer Educational Opportunities in Phoenix

Posted by Kimberly Mickelson on July 30, 2013
Construction / No Comments

Advance U to host community open house this Friday

Advance U, a Montessori approach to learning, will offer a low-cost, pre-K education program and will serve grades K-3. The elementary campus is an open enrollment campus centered in the South Mountain Village of Phoenix. Advance U marks The Leona Group’s 25th charter school in Arizona.

The 8,000 square foot charter school campus features seven exploratory size classrooms, a kitchen, and administrative offices. This adaptive reuse, design/build project is a collaborative effort of The Leona Group, OFFICE JEL, and DECCA Commercial Builders, Inc. Advance U will complement The Leona Group’s current quality educational programs and Leona’s vision for student success.

Advance U will host an Open House this Friday, August 2, 2013 from 5:00PM – 7:00PM. The community is invited to tour the campus, meet the staff, and enjoy refreshments. Advance U is actively enrolling for grades pre-K-3. The new campus location is 449 E. Southern Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85040. For more information, call (602) 243-8531 or visit

The Leona Group – Under the vision of Dr. William Coats, The Leona Group was formed in 1996 to provide a quality choice in education to students who were not being effectively served by their traditional public school systems. The Leona Group opened its first charter high schools in Arizona in 1997 and officially formed its Arizona division and Phoenix corporate headquarters in 2000. With the addition of Advance U, Arizona will be host to 25 of the group’s schools for the 2013-2014 school year. The Leona Group also has schools in Michigan, Ohio, Florida, and Indiana and provides a quality educational choice to more than 20,000 K-12 students in nearly 70 schools. Visit for additional information.

OFFICE JEL – The partners of OFFICE JEL have provided project design and development services in the valley since 1997 on a variety of project types and scales. OFFICE JEL provides its clients with project conceptualization and project development services from property acquisition through design and construction. On Advance U, OFFICE JEL functions as the primary point of contact on behalf of The Leona Group.

DECCA Commercial Builders, Inc. – DECCA Commercial Builders, Inc. is part of the DECCA family of independently operated, family owned, general contracting corporations and is the contracting corporation that specializes in commercial construction. Commercial specialties include retail, office, industrial, manufacturing, educational, governmental, hospitality, renovations, and tenant improvements. DECCA’s experience, reputation and integrity span nearly three decades of building across the southwestern United States. DECCA offers a full array of services ranging from design/build and conceptual cost estimating to onsite construction management and dedicated customer service. For more information, call (480) 609-3066 or visit

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