Having been with my husband for the past 11 years (married for 7), I can say based on a far off recollection that networking and building relationships in business is sometimes daunting…like dating. It might just be that I’m an emotional person, but I’ve gotten my heart broken in business a few times…recently even!
There are certain life lessons I must learn over and over again (I think we all find ourselves having moments of deja vu like that). Each time the lesson has a slightly different iteration on the same basic point. This is one of those life lessons for me.
It’s about people and relationships. How to build relationships that have trust? Figuring out ways to surround myself with people that energize and inspire me; having friends I share vision of the future with. Wondering why certain people believe in me while other’s are patronizing. And I’m always curious to better understand what I might be doing or saying that has a different impact then I expected.
Despite my personal studies, I continually have to learn that building quality relationships really does take time. Sometimes we meet people that we feel an instant connection or strong bond with…but just because you have a few awesome dates in the beginning doesn’t mean you should start to develop certain expectations for the relationship…it’s like hearing wedding bells in your future when the other person doesn’t even realize you’re dating!
I’m learning to stop letting myself feel hurt by someone when I really just need to be patient, and let go of my preconceived notions. That’s why it is important to let the relationship evolve in time without rigid, un-communicated expectations. My lesson of recent: it is important to remember that while a spark’s there when you meet, the flame might not last. Or it may continue to burn but not quite so brightly. In other words, don’t get ahead of yourself because of the excitement of the possibilities in a moment.
Despite the notion that you should close the sale as quickly as possible (a reason “we should rethink sales as we know it” Daniel Pink). There’s truly no need to rush into a professional relationship. Take some time to make sure it’s a good fit. Get to understand each other’s passions. Communicate any expectations openly and directly. And consistently explore formalities as appropriate.
In case you’re wondering if you need to shift down a few gears, here are three signs you might be rushing it rather then building quality relationships.
- Within a short time frame of meeting you make a long-term commitment to work together that is loosely structured.
- Things seem to be progressing, but you feel obligated to make a compromise, a leap of faith that you’re second guessing.
- You have expectations you’re not comfortable talking about.