Put down the ROI for a second. Yes, you’re right – we do need more revenue, growth, and we do need to maximize our revenue-building time. But we are social creatures and functions of our environment. The environment, tech ecosystem, surroundings, whatever you want to call it, helps shape who we are, what our companies do, how our strategies are formed, how to obtain growth, and also help us to think in new ways.
Real relationships come in all shapes, forms, and sizes. You have:
- College friends
- Team Members
- Industry peers
- Field peers
- Advisors, Mentors
- Board Members
Each unique relationship that falls underneath these silos provide unique perspectives, advice, guidance, and outlooks. They also can help when you’re in need. Paying it forward is great, but relationships need to be actively managed. Relationships shouldn’t be strictly transactional, but I do feel that relationships are made up of a series of transactions, over time.
- Familiarity if you meet someone for the first time. Perhaps you’re sharing a few extra details on the presentation you made. They know you as that person who knows x or y.
- Credibility as you engage and share what’s happening at your organization or challenges in life. Usually, this is is a result of repeat interaction.
- Trust. This is the “closed deal,” the outcome you’re seeking. These relationships represent the ultimate outcome in which you can bet on someone and their word because you know them so well. You no longer question them and their expertise. Instead, you lean on them, or they lean on you for their professional or personal advice.
We’re never perfect as human beings, and we should always strive to be intellectually curious. Sales professionals especially should always be in a constant state of learning and networking. Regularly take time out of your week to meet with these people. It is a continuous cycle of actions representing giving and receiving.
Close the deals, but maintain the relationships so you may continue to grow as a person.