Business Is All About Relationships
Wednesday, June 7, 2017 on Labels: tips to manage
Very little of my business is now local. But I DO run into people often from previous business relationships. Like me, many of these people are in different businessesoften different careers altogether.
It struck me how much my present business relationships have to do with my previous ones. Ive found it easy to recreate rapport and establish trust with folks Ive had good dealings with before. When I know someone and have confidence in their word, doing business with them becomes easier.
I just had lunch with someone whom Ive known and worked with since 1983. All of our dealings have not been positive. In fact he was hurt financially by some poor business decisions I made in the early 90s. Even so, our friendship weathered that storm because of the depth of the relationship.
Ive not always been successful, but I strive to have an excellent relationship with everyone. It doesnt seem possible all the time, but its worth striving for nonetheless.
Marketing gurus recommend that we should be mindful of the lifetime value of a customerto look not only at the profit from an initial sale. Its good advice, but I would take it a step further Be mindful of the lifetime value of a RELATIONSHIPnot just a customer.
One of the key concepts we talked about at the recent World-Class Business Summit was the importance of relationships in business. I went so far as to say that business is really a network of communication against a background of relationships.
And its not just relationships with customers-its with suppliers, coworkers, stakeholderseven competitors.
As some of my recent encounters have pointed out, some relationships are completely reversed from what they used to be. Customers can now be employers. Competitors can now be customers. Coworkers may now be bosses.
Today, with the Internet, our business world becomes even smaller. We do business with people around the world, but its really still a pretty small community. As I talk with other entrepreneurs online, we seem to know many of the same people. In a few years, we may each be doing something a bit different. And the relationships we have and build today will serve us in the future in direct proportion to the quality and integrity we create.
Its important that we cultivate and nurture our relationships. Being honest, playing win-win and treating people fairly isnt just a moral thing to doits good businessnow, and in the future.