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The Importance Of Building Relationships In Business


03/06/2010

Romeo & Juliet

By Marc Lawn, The Business GP

It is where trade started, and some, especially in the digital age, would claim, a dying art, but relationships are the key to business success. They always have been and always will. I have talked before about ‘written contracts’ being a fairly recent addition to the business world, go back in time and you will find phrases like ‘my word is my bond’ and ‘shake on it’ which emerged from the way business was done.

How do you go about building business relationships then? Is there a magical solution? Unfortunately there is...

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...not, as with all things though, practice makes perfect.

In the Dire Straits version of Romeo & Juliet a line for me sums up what a really strong business relationship feels like — ‘How can you look at me as if I was just another one of your deals?’

Why, because its personal and it really matters, but it takes time and effort to build. I believe there are three key areas to consider.

1. Consistency — People crave consistency (some will also talk about dependability) in life, they like to know that if they, for example, pick up the phone that within a certain ‘tolerance’ the experience they get from a conversation will meet their expectations. That is why people buy branded good because they ‘know’ what they will get as a result and that is why they are so angry and annoyed when the brand fails to deliver.

2. Style — Do you understand the communication style of the people that you are trying to build a relationship with. Do they think in a visual way (i.e. do they always go...ahhh I get it, when you show them a visual of what you are describing), or... continued on page two >

 

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