How would you characterize your business relationships? Are they as successful and productive as you would like them to be? Do you feel that you have all of the necessary leadership skills to build and grow the relationships?
In today’s fast-paced business environment, building strong relationships is more important than ever and often the missing link. Relationships are key in every business. Whether it’s with employees, clients, customers, or partners, strong relationships are the foundation of successful collaboration and communication. When you are not able to demonstrate the leadership skills that prioritize building relationships, you won’t be able to foster a collaborative and communicative culture within an organization therefore possibly missing out on increased productivity, engagement, and overall success.
Business Relationship Management: The Importance of Building Strong Relationships
Effective business leaders also know the value of cultivating long-term client relationships by promoting open communication and demonstrating steadfast values. In this article, you will explore how to cultivate relationship networks and coach others on relationship building and how working together in good relationships can create the results you are looking for.
Below the four key leadership skills that are required to acquire understanding, trust and respect.
1. Focus on Relationship Quality Instead of Quantity
According to The Invisible Network Strategies of Successful People by Rob Cross of Connected Commons, being mindful about how you develop your network, who you include, and being intentional about cultivating key relationships is more important than collecting a large number of random connections. Upon further research, twelve leadership competencies grouped under these three strategies were identified among leaders who were successful at building relationships:
- Produce innovative solutions
- Execute work efficiently
- Thrive at work
2. Cultivate Relationship Networks
To build strong relationships, business leaders need to cultivate their relationship networks. This means actively seeking out opportunities to connect with others, whether it’s through networking events, social media, or one-on-one meetings. When business relationship managers and leaders, in general, take the time to get to know partners and colleagues, they can better understand their needs and goals and tailor their communication and collaboration accordingly.
3. Coach Others on Relationship Building
As business leaders, it’s not enough to focus on building our own relationships. You must also coach others on relationship building. This means teaching them the skills they need to communicate effectively, build trust, and collaborate with others, such as being concise, looking for non-verbal cues, being aware of your tone of voice, and active listening. Leaders can do this by modelling good relationship-building behaviour themselves, providing feedback and guidance to others, and creating opportunities for people to connect and collaborate with one another.
4. Build and Grow your Business Relationships
When people work together in good relationships, they can achieve great things. By building trust and mutual respect, they can communicate effectively, share ideas, and work towards shared goals. As with every relationship, you will need to put in some serious work to develop and grow it. As an example: Are you done after telling your spouse “I love you” for the first time? You probably will need to repeat that a 1000 times, in 10,000 variations, and 100,000 different situations. And still you won’t be done yet. Often people forget that a business relationship needs to be actively and frequently nurtured as well.
Every Good Relationship is built on Trust and Respect
Building strong relationships is a key leadership competency for effective business relationship management. By cultivating relationship networks, coaching others on relationship building, and fostering a culture of collaboration and communication, leaders can drive significant business success. When you prioritize relationships, you will create a foundation of trust and mutual respect that can lead to innovation, problem-solving, and effective decision-making. So if you want to be a successful leader, start building strong relationships today!
Lead The Pack Consulting
2 Cross, R. (2018, May). The Invisible Network Strategies of Successful People. Retrieved May 2023, from https://connectedcommons.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/the-invisible-network-strategies-of-successful-people.pdf.
3 Sharp Emerson, M. (2021, August 30). Eight Things You Can Do To Improve Your Communication Skills [web log]. Retrieved May 30, 2023, from https://professional.dce.harvard.edu/blog/eight-things-you-can-do-to-improve-your-communication-skills/.