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Relationship building March 29, 2008

Posted by rickbron in Relationship.
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p5130012.jpg Would you prefer to buy from someone you like? Most people would answer yes to this question. The Big Dogz understand this principle and apply it to all their dealings with people. The result is higher effectiveness with less effort. The principle is called Relationship Selling. Business relationships can be viewed as a continuum of possibilities from adversarial through partnership.  Let’s take a look at the five key components of a business relationship and how we can tell if we have a partnership relationship. 

  1. Interpersonal

This is how we interact with each other. In a partnership, we are informal; we joke around and call each other by our first names. We inquire about personal situations like family and hobbies. We are polite with each other and remember special events like birthdays and anniversaries. 

  1. Trust

Trust is our willingness to take a risk. In a partnership relationship, the trust is very high. We have experience with each other that has resulted in our needs being met. There is mutual trust and respect. Most deals are made on a handshake or a verbal commitment. 

  1. Goals

Goals are what we want to get accomplished. In our relationship they are shared and aligned. I may have other goals in my business or life that are not connected with you. I frequently share those with you and you share yours with me. Both of us look for opportunities to help each other accomplish our non-mutual goals. 

  1. Conflict

Conflict is a difference of opinion. In general conflict is avoided in most relationships. In our partnership relationship, conflict is encouraged and respected. It is how we grow. Instead of using conflict as a wedge between us, we use it to create innovation and make both our businesses stronger. We use structured problem solving processes to get the creative solutions. 

  1. Decisions

Decisions are choices that we make. In our relationship, choices are made that optimize the benefits for both of us. There are clear areas where one of us makes the decision because we are the best qualified to make the decision. There is no second guessing. When it is clear that neither one of us if more qualified to make the decision, we use consensus or compromise to get to a decision that benefits both of us. We don’t keep score on decisions. The Big Dogz are constantly evaluating their business relationships and are striving to have each of these components at the partner level.  In the next thirty days take a look at one of your key business relationships. What are the levels for each of these five components? What are your actions to make this relationship a partnership?

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