With over 25 years of being in business, I can safely say that people do business with people they know. Such relationships are built mainly upon a mutual respect for each other. In my years of business, I have witnessed what should have been a good business venture turn sour because one party in the relationship did not respect or trust the other party. Building a successful and profitable business takes time and energy. No one gets rich over night! I’ll say that again. No one gets rich over night! There is always a story behind a person’s personal or business success. Yet, one of the main ingredients to a successful business is healthy and mutually satisfying business relationships.
So, what must we do to improve our relationships with our prospects? How can we build a healthy rapport with our prospects that would help our organizations improve our bottom line and increase our revenues? Rapport is your ability to gain immediate trust and confidence with your prospects. Never underestimate the art of building a rapport. It is crucial when you are trying to close the deal. Here are five steps that will help you build strong and healthy relationships.
1. Be On Time
I cannot begin to stress how important it is to arrive on time for meetings and appointments. Many deals have been lost because of tardiness. The best way to show your commitment is to be on time. When you make a conscious decision to be on time for meetings and appointments, you send forth a powerful message to your prospects, one that says, “I respect your time.” Believe me when I say, nothing will frustrate your prospects more than you arriving late for an appointment. A few minutes could cost you millions of dollars.
2. Make Eye Contact
Have you ever had a conversation with a person whose eyes roamed all over the room during your entire conversation? How did it make you feel? Making eye contact with your prospects is vital. Imagine saying to your future spouse I love you with your eyes looking toward the ground. Not good, right? As you are making eye contact, you are saying, “I am genuinely interested in what you are saying,” while at the same time, building a sense of trust. Remember, this is about building strong and healthy relationships.
3. Remember Names!
Remembering and repeating your prospect’s name will do wonders for the relationship. Remembering names is an art. It takes practice. Practice saying their name over and over again! Nothing is worse than meeting someone and within seconds you forget their name. Don’t let this happen to you. Develop a technique for remembering names and watch your customer base grow.
4. Listen With Interest
Here is a pet peeve of mine! If you want to be successful, you must become a great listener. Your ability to listen more and speak less is a treasure. There is a level of respect that a person gives to you when you are listening to them. What you are really saying is, “This moment is all about you.”
5. Compliment Your Prospects
Do you want to impress your clients? Start intentionally handing out compliments! A good, sincere compliment will help you close any deal. Your clients are human too. A word of encouragement goes a long way. Remember, this is about building strong and healthy relationships.
If you follow these five steps, I can guarantee different responses from the prospects you’re targeting. Creating win – win relationships is what the 21st century is all about. A time where entrepreneurs are looking to joint venture with those who will add value to their core business and in return will gladly do the same. Trusted relationships increase the bottom line for all parties who are looking to serve each other. Your character and integrity is the most important virtues in business. So as you go out in the marketplace, be sincere on how to find a commonality between you and the person you want to do business with. If you show them value in working with you, they will see it because “they like you,” and people do business with people they like.
So go now…go out and utilize these 5 steps starting tomorrow, then get back to me and let me know how they are working. Making a cold market person and turn them into a warm market today…Happy Hunting !