Guest blog by Dennis Bridges, MBA
In one of my coaching appointments the other day I was preaching the value of LRT (Like, Respect and Trust), as I often do, when the conversation took a small step backward. The question was, “What’s the key to attracting those relationships in the first place?”
Both a relevant and important question that could have a complicated answer, but for the sake of time I responded with the following and I’m sticking to it. From my perspective, attracting potentially strong and valuable professional relationships requires you to invest time and effort in the following three basic elements: Awareness, Credibility and Likeability.
Awareness: First and foremost people need to know that you exist. They don’t need to know you, but they at least need to know of you. So make sure you’re interacting with the world around you. The more you meet and connect with people and put pieces of yourself out there the more opportunity there is for people to bump into it. Go to events, use social media, create things, start conversations, join conversations, smile and wave at people and share information about yourself.
Credibility: The more capable and proficient people perceive you to be the more desirable your product or service. To increase credibility you can share relevant and industry specific information, contribute to conversations, attend relevant events, spend time with other credible sources etc. Actively manage your reputation, both on and offline, by keeping your profiles, wardrobe and expertise up to date.
Likeability: People will go out of their way to do things for people they enjoy spending time with, it’s one of life’s oldest truths and it’s not rocket science. If you can…
- Be on time
- Finish what you start
- Do what you say you are going to do
- And say please and thank you
Then you’re more than half way there. Here are a few other big ones…
- Don’t make the conversation about you
- Listen more than you talk (we have 2 ears and one mouth…a hint?)
- Take a position, but keep an open mind
- Give credit and take responsibility
- And stay positive!
Notice that all three of these elements are earned not achieved. They’re things you must constantly work towards and never take for granted. The more your actions align with these things the more strong and valuable relationships you will develop. I suggest you start today.
photo credit: dhendrix73 via photopin cc