Building Business Relationships That Last

There are many things that can make a business fail before it gets off the ground. Having the wrong type of product or service is an obvious reason for losses and ultimate failure. But there can be more to it. You could have the wrong hours, or be in a very bad location. This can happen even if your business is primarily online. You could have skimped on your advertising and no one knows that you even exist. One thing that can kill a small business is not having a good rapport with customers. You have to be good at building business relationships that last or you are doomed before you begin.

I once worked for a man that had no idea what building business relationships was all about. We lived in a very small area, but he had enough business to keep him open. He was making a decent profit for a while, but customers were talking, and people stopped coming. At one point, he alienated an entire union who from then on would not shop with him. He felt that his store was the best place to state what was on his mind without regard for others. This is not the way to go about building business relationships that are going to last. He closed shop soon after.

You don’t want to make the same mistake when building business relationships. You want to keep your personal life and opinions out of things. It is always ideal to be a bit personal with your customers, but you do not want to subject them to your ideas about politics, how to raise their children, or general badmouthing of anyone that they may know. They are not going to come back, and you can bet they are going to tell others of their bad experience. Building business relationships means knowing when to speak and when to hold it in.

Another key element in building business relationships that are going to be beneficial and last into the future is to be honest and take each complaint, no matter how small, very seriously. The saying that the customer is always right is around for a reason. Even when they are not right, you have to bend to keep them happy. That does not mean doing something to put yourself out of business, but you have to think about the consequences when dealing with any type of customer service issue. At times, this means biting your tongue and giving in.

Building business relationships that last is also about what you do for your community. If you become involved in things that mean something to those that are your main customer base, they are going to see you in a better light. You are going to attract new customers as well. You should by no means get in over your head with financial commitments that you cannot fulfill, but you should make an effort to help out, even if it means that all you have to give is your time. Building business relationships is an ongoing endeavor, but very easy to do if you know how to treat people the right way.

Copyright © Alex Tran