Most people are social by nature if not by nurture, the easiest way in which to seek a response is by saying “G’day” and asking, “Is everything Ok?” with a genuine smile on your dial.
In business the ability to communicate effectively is still the most relevant reason it succeeds or fails. Once you open dialog you are creating a relationship. The next important steps are tending to it just like a person diets and exercises to maintain their body, or reads and studies to maintain their mind, so must you maintain relationships.
Some ways you can tend to a relationship both privately and in business are as follows –
· Communicate clearly and articulate your expectations. In business it may be in writing, but it is important to discuss and explain what your needs are verbally as well. Express your concerns and hopes with transparency.
· Make it a habit to pay attention to details. It makes it easier for people to do business with you. Take obstacles out of their way. Make their day brighter by easing the stumbling blocks. Listen to their needs and wants.
· Always try to keep your word. I say “try” because there will be times that you will make social contracts that you will have to break due to the laws of the land. Many a predator or pathological psychopath will attempt to create pathways using promises and pressure to make you do things to serve them, like the initiations used by outlaw MC’s and the like. Those bonds can be broken easily as a relationship with the 1% of the population is not as important as the conduct and character you will attain dealing with the rest of the 99%.
However, try to keep your promises, not just because it creates trust but it builds upon your social brand. Being known as “reliable” will attract more business and friends. A natural symbiosis will be the natural feeling of self-respect and well-being you will promote internally.
· Give respect irrespective if it is shared. Listen when people speak no matter the relevance of the story (it will give you some insight into the other persons concerns, even if it seems irrelevant at the time.). Show up on time. Be responsive and timely with phone calls and e-mails. Give people consideration and pay attention.
· Let your friends and colleagues know that you appreciate them. One reason for friendship to fade is the feeling of advantage. In the modern era, where everything including some relationships is based on making success points or “winning the game”, a relationship can become one sided quickly. Thanking people for their support and guidance isn’t just good for business, it is essential for all long-term relationships.
This can be difficult because it requires active listening and strategic observation. Thanking people in both words and actions is important, but you must also determine the amount of praise the other party feels is sufficient. For some it is public acknowledgment, some flowers, some money, but each party will have an individual want or need. Don’t take anyone for granted, it is important to recognize and acknowledge all those that play a part in your life.
· Go the extra mile for those important in your life. It may not benefit you directly, but it creates goodwill and makes you feel good about yourself. There is a law of reciprocation, “what goes around comes around”.
· Create social media rules and stick by them. Let people know you only respond to social media at set times. Social media is one of the fastest growing addictions of the current century, it is great as a tool but is a vampire on time, discipline and relationships. A shared addiction benefits neither party, so set times and limits and respond appropriately.
· Forgive mistakes, practice empathy and compassion. Remember that empathy has a role in relationships but compassion has the lead role in business. If people try their best, show effort and conduct themselves appropriately make room for the occasional error in judgement.
· Aim to make every relationship, one for life. Show your friends, co-workers and clients you care about their well-being. Be interested and involved in their victories and disappointments. If the people in your life feel valued by you, like a precious resource, they will show you the best of what they have to offer.
There will be those that due to diagnosed and undiagnosed psychiatric issues, will attempt to harm you or those you love. Where possible avoid them, ask them to seek help or try your best to have them committed. You are not their specialist unless employed to be so (Good luck with that). It is emotionally destructive to keep any proximity to such people. Proximity is very powerful, it’s how you meet the love of your life, your best friends and there is irrefutable evidence of its influence on success. The cost to both you and your family in keeping any proximity to those you know are socially, mentally and sometimes physically destructive are too high. Try to have them get help, but where possible, make a choice for your own and your families future over theirs.
Relationships may seem like hard work, but if you follow some simple guidelines, you will live a better life surrounded by amazing people.