Ways To Start a Positive Business Relationship
Business relationships are the connections you build with your customers, team members, and business patterns. Starting relationships in a positive way can help you maintain long-lasting, productive connections. Learning how to start positive relationships could help you grow your professional network and succeed in your business career. In this article, we explain what a business relationship is, discuss why it’s important to start positive business relationships, and list 12 methods you can use to start positive relationships in your workplace.
Why is it important to start positive business relationships?
Building positive business relationships is an important part of many careers. Depending on your industry, you may build positive relationships with your customers, clients, employees and suppliers. By focusing on the relationship in the beginning stage, you can help establish beneficial, positive connections.
Creating positive relationships from the start may have the following advantages:
- Higher employee satisfaction: If you’re in a management role, building positive relationships with your team members could improve overall employee satisfaction. By starting relationships positively, you may also create a happier, more positive workplace.
- Improved customer satisfaction: Starting positive business relationships with your clients and customers can help increase customer satisfaction. Feelings of trust and loyalty are an important part of positive business relationships, and when your customers feel they can trust you, they may have higher satisfaction rates.
- Increased productivity and efficiency: Creating positive relationships with your suppliers, vendors and business partners can help create a more productive and efficient business. Professionals may collaborate more effectively when they have positive business relationships.
12 ways to start a positive business relationship
Here are 12 methods you can use to help you start positive business relationships with your clients, team members and financial partners:
1. Be yourself
Being yourself could help start positive relationships in the workplace. It may also be easier to build and maintain positive relationships when you start them in an authentic way. By being authentic, you can help show your team members and clients that they can trust you.
You can show your authentic self in the workplace by developing communication skills, building interpersonal skills, and practicing active listening. These skills can help you build authentic connections with your business partners, team members, and clients.
2. Develop effective networking opportunities
One way to start effective relationships with your business partners is to develop effective networking opportunities. This can vary depending on your industry, but it may include a conference, charity event, or retreat. Scheduling fun and productive opportunities to meet professionals in your field can help you start effective business relationships.
3. Ask questions
When talking to a new business connection, consider asking questions to help you start a positive relationship. You may ask questions about the individual’s interests, work, or thoughts. By asking questions, you can open up a dialogue. It may also show the person who you’re interested in their thoughts, which can help lead to a more positive interaction.
4. Create clear expectations
Another way to start a productive business connection is by establishing clear expectations at the beginning of a new relationship. This can vary depending on the relationship. It might look like sharing a company handbook, using an onboarding training session, or discussing work responsibilities for employees. For clients, this might include a contract or onboarding meeting.
During these sessions, you can and the other party can discuss your expectations. Whether you are working together for a project or a certain period, you can establish the terms. When each person knows what they’re expected to do, it may lead to a more effective and positive work experience.
5. Find common goals and interests
Consider finding shared interests and goals to help you begin positive business relationships. For clients and business partners, this may include connecting over a shared financial objective, such as earning a higher revenue in the next quarter. For team members, it might include your shared career goals or industry interests. You may also discuss topics outside of work to help you find shared interests, such as hobbies. This can be a great way to bond with a new connection.
6. Communicate frequently
Communication is an important part of a productive business relationship. Consider contacting your new business connection regularly at the beginning of your relationship to establish a communication pattern. This can vary depending on the specific relationship but may include weekly check-ins, monthly reports, or daily stand-up meetings. By establishing a clear communication schedule, you can show your new business connection that you’re dependable and want to connect with them often.
7. Set realistic goals and deadlines
At the beginning of a new business relationship, consider setting clear goals and deadlines to create a more positive experience. For example, when meeting with a new client, you can help establish trust by being honest about deadlines and project deliverables. When collaborating with team members, creating realistic goals for them may help them succeed.
8. Consider a relationship management plan
A relationship management plan is a tool professionals can use to build long-lasting productive business connections. It can vary depending on your industry and personal preferences, but it may include a communication schedule, meetings, and contact names. For example, when working with a new client, you can establish which team member will contact the client and how often. By planning these elements, you can help build successful relationships from the start.
9. Create a clear schedule
Establishing a work schedule for projects, deliverables and meetings can help establish an environment of trust and respect. For your clients and business partners, this may include a contract or initial planning meeting. For employees, you may discuss their expected schedule during onboarding or training.
10. Be honest about costs and prices
Being transparent about your costs and prices can help start a positive relationship. Honesty about prices can help your clients, customers and partners trust you. During your consultation or first meeting, share your fees and prices upfront to help start a productive relationship. With customers, try to be transparent about your fees and price changes, so they can develop trust in your company.
11. Share relevant information
Consider sharing information regularly with your new business connection. This can include links, resources, training guides, or other materials. For example, if your new business partner mentioned a project they are working on and you read a book about that project, you might send them the book’s name. This can help show your new network connection that you’re thinking of them and want to share information.
12. Start building trust and mutual respect
It can take time to develop trust and respect in a business relationship, but you may start building these elements early by being honest and showing you respect the other person. This can include maintaining eye contact, speaking positively and professionally and respecting someone else’s time by being punctual for all meetings.
It may also include making changes or responding to feedback effectively. For example, if you tell a new client that you’re adding a new service, you can share your progress with them. This can help create trust and show the client that you’re dependable.