And is isn't hard - it's more about focusing on people, who they are and what interests them. And that's just where you spend your time. About them - not you, not your business. Create partnerships.
- Be natural - by being yourself, you will build relationships with ease. Trust yourself - let yourself go. Be open, share your feelings, but mostly, listen to others.
- Ask questions - you will find out more about others by listening to what they have to say, so be nosy, ask open questions, find out stuff. Then ask more about what they have been telling you.
- Show integrity - by ensuring that others can trust you, by following through with promises and being discreet, people will be more open with you and that is the doorway to great relationships. Do what you say you will do.
- Match - nothing helps build relationships by matching tone, volume of voice. By taking the same body posture. By paying attention to their eyes (whilst nor staring).
- Have fun - nothing works better to build relationships than by having a foundation of a fun time together. So laugh, take time to ‘play’ and be informal. Take part.
- What do you know about your people outside the business?
- When was the last time you asked them about something important to them?
- What percentage of your people do you speak to every day?
- Who have you shared your hopes, fears, worries and excitements about your organisation with this week?
- What three steps can you take to build relationships between you and your people - in the next three working days?
Copyright 2005 Martin Haworth is a Business and Management Coach. He works worldwide, mainly by phone, with small business owners, managers and corporate leaders. He has hundreds of hints, tips and ideas at his website, http://www.coaching-businesses-to-success.com . (Note to editors. Feel free to use this article, wherever you think it might be of value - it would be good if you could include a live link)
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