The Fastest Way to Build Business Relationships

To succeed in your career, you have to build business relationships. There is one thing you can give your business acquaintances that they will value immediately, positioning you in their minds as a source to watch.

What your prospects and clients value most of all, more than your sage consulting advice, has to do with them, not you. It goes right to the heart of their success. You likely encounter this relationship-building element all the time, but since you are not tuned into it you may not notice.

Give Prospects What They Really Want

What is this magical element? Business leads.build business relationships

Every company needs new and repeat business to grow. Finding leads and converting them into sales is always the top thought of the CEO — always.

You might be thinking, “I’ve got enough trouble finding leads for myself, how am I going to find them for my prospects and clients, too?”  The reason you don’t see those “other” leads is because you are not looking for them. Yet sources of leads are all around you and you can use them to build business relationships quickly.

Example: I subscribe to a weekly email alert from my local government. They send out solicitation notices for projects set aside for local small businesses. They buy just about every type of product or service you can imagine: janitorial services, printing, paper clips, advertising, computer services, everything.

I saw an announcement for web design services. My company doesn’t provide this service so usually I would delete that message. But some of my target market does web design. So, I forwarded that announcement along with a simple note that read “Hi Steve, I thought you might be interested in this lead.”

Tune In To What They Need

The amount of goodwill I created from that simple message, one that I would have otherwise deleted, went a long way in building a business relationship. People might not reply to other messages you send to them, but they never ignore a business lead. They will always appreciate your gesture.

There are sources of leads all around you. The next time you are at a networking event and talk to someone who might be a good fit for another person in your network – or even someone else you just met – let them know. Build business relationships by connecting two people who may have synergies. You will create goodwill for everyone.

Every time I share a business lead, I receive a reply thanking me even if the lead isn’t a good fit. My message shows that I am looking out for them, not trying to sell my services. And that builds business relationships faster than anything else.

Say Hello First

I see you over there on the other side of the room. I know you looked at me because our eyes connected for a moment before you quickly looked the other way. So, who’s going to say hello first?say hello first

Me or you?

Maybe we’re too shy. It’s easier to be approached than it is to do the approaching. Or maybe we’ve imposed a price tag on who makes the move to say hello first.

Who loses in this situation? Everyone.

Years ago when my son was one year old and just learning to talk, he would say “hi” to everyone. As I pulled into the line at the grocery store, he would shout “hi” in a happy voice to the clerk. It always put a smile on their face and many would engage in a conversation.

Saying hello first creates a sense of being approachable.  That reduces the anxiety the other person may be feeling.  Your smile creates a feeling of warmth and joy. It is welcoming. And all of us – even the curmudgeons – gravitate toward the things that bring us joy and make us feel welcome.

If you are shy, you can overcome shyness by putting on a smile and taking the initiative to say hello first to someone in the room that you think is also shy. You will be surprised at the warm response you will get back. This will give you confidence to do it again. Don’t risk losing the opportunity to connect with someone and build a relationship, whether it’s business or personal.

Spread the love. Say hello first. Every time.