During a conversation with a client a couple weeks ago the word "foundation" came up. We had recently been through some rough patches with a couple vendors, and when we all came out ahead at the end, I was thanked for managing the storm, and they thanked me for my commitment to them throughout our relationship. I also thanked my contact for her loyalty to me for the past couple years, and we talked about how trust and loyalty go a long way to build a foundation for a long-lasting relationship.
A week later my marketing team gave me a sneak peak at a new marketing campaign that revolved around relationships and foundations. A good and well-timed sign!
Think back on your sales career. How many times have you really sold a service or product without having a relationship with that customer in place? Was a sale based on a new-found excitement for a new acquaintance, or was it built from a strong connection with someone you can truly trust? For me the former is rare. I would assume anyone reading this would have a similar reflection. Granted, I've sold items and services to clients I still haven't met in person. However, the majority of my customers are people I have great comfort with.
That marketing campaign surrounding foundations is going to feature the following words: Loyalty, Commitment, Open, Trust, Clarity. Talk about some bold aspects of a good foundation! Without any of them, that foundation will crumble. And all aspects are able to be enhanced at anytime to increase the strength of that foundation.
Just as it's important to water and attend to our personal relationships outside of work, it's just as important to manage those work relationships we can sometimes take for granted. Business and personal relationships are so similar, yet so different. Both are equally important.
What is your business built on?
David Vander Bloomen is the owner of Branding180 LLC. His company is a distributor of promotional products, apparel, and marketing material, and they also offer graphic design, video production, and voice-over services. David lives near Freedom, WI with his wife and 4-year-old son.