A Contact is Not a Relationship, but it’s a Good Start

Relationships are the key to success in every field. Here are my top 20 ways to help create an effective business relationship.

  • Find a point of commonality
  • Build on trust
  • The little things count (like remembering birthdays or anniversaries)
  • Don’t sell all the time
  • Stay in touch
  • Don’t be annoying
  • Make relationship building a goal
  • Perfect your social skills
  • Don’t focus on just what you can contribute, but on how your skills dovetail
  • Get out of the office
  • Phone and computer connection is too impersonal
  • Face to face is critical
  • Show empathy
  • Find personal time in the relationship
  • Offer your time and help when needed
  • Listen effectively (ask what they may need)
  • Have a sense of humor
  • Be a great observer
  • Don’t always ask for something
  • Don’t promise what you can’t deliver

In any good relationship, your word is your bond, but actions often speak louder. Be sure to treat people in a way you’d expect to be treated yourself when you first meet them. That’s the best rule of all.