“Do what you did at the beginning of a relationship and there won’t be an end.”
We live in a business world where relationships matter.
One of the most powerful books I have read thus far about relationships is by Dr. Dharius Daniels, “Relational Intelligence”
He goes onto say the following,
“Every single area of your life is inevitably impacted by your relationships. Your spiritual, physical, financial, emotional, and professional progress is tied and tethered to who you allow to be a part of and influence your life.”
Now stop and think about that for a moment… As he continues with,
“Therefore, if you are serious about taking your life to the next level, you should be serious about taking your relationships to the next level.”
Are you serious and committed to taking your client relationships to the next level?
Key in on this… How you develop, nurture and build a healthy relationship funnel will play a significant part in the strength of your sales funnel.
What defines a client relationship?
What does a client relationship look like to you?
I’d like for you to think about this:
The relationships you think you have with your clients; do they feel the same way about their relationship with you?
When was the last time you asked your clients what they expect in a business relationship and with YOU? Try it, you may learn something!
Building purposeful, meaningful and joyful relationships is one thing; maintaining them is another important challenge.
The more you invest in your client relationships, the more you will collect on your client relationships.
Are you riding the relationship rollercoaster or are you investing in your client relationships?
NO ‘E’ TICKET RIDES WITH CLIENT RELATIONSHIPS
The relationship between you and your clients is much more than the brief purchase of a product, a service or a solution.
It is about meaningful connection. It’s about the bond you form based upon trust, credibility and mutual respect.
“Ever been to Disneyland? That was definitely an E ticket!”
Growing up in Southern California, Disneyland was a frequent hangout, filled with memories and experiences.
When Disneyland opened in 1955, visitors purchased an admission ticket and then purchased separate admission inside for each attraction. Less than three months after opening, Disneyland began selling “Value Books”, these books contained several of each coupon labeled “A” through “C”, to supplement the pay-per-ride system.
‘E’ ticket, the coveted coupon, first offered in 1959, for the most exciting Disneyland attractions at that time – Submarine Voyage, Matterhorn Bobsleds, and Disneyland–Alweg Monorail.
The term “an E ticket ride” entered American slang meaning the ultimate in thrills.
In 1983, Sally Ride became the first American woman and the third woman to fly in space, as she went on to describe her first excursion into space as a “real E ticket ride.”
Your client relationships are more than a trip to an amusement park!
Rollercoasters are addictive. This is why people ride, crave, and seek them out.
The fear and adrenaline rushes are peppered with the kind of relief that makes you happy to be alive.
Rollercoaster client relationships are equally addictive. Unlike rollercoasters, they can harm your well-being. Now, think about what I just said.
These rollercoaster type relationships can be characterized by emotional highs and lows, fueled by drama and passion, especially around month, quarter or year-end.
There are moments of deep connection (I need a sale) associated with and punctuated by longer periods of disconnection (I made the sale).
Folks, this is real world and sadly a daily sales occurrence. What you create by doing this is an emotionally unstable client relationship, in which your clients become frustrated due to the lack of consistent connection.
Unfortunately for many in sales, the relationship rollercoaster has been built on the tracks of low trust and commitment.
Relationship coach Kyle Benson shares,
“I define the relationship roller-coaster as a relationship that has a few emotional highs full of connection, fulfillment, and intimacy followed by longer lows of disconnection, and then back up again. Up and down, just like a roller coaster, except not as fun as the theme park you went to as a kid.”
Sales professionals avoid the relationship rollercoaster by:
- Continually building new relationships by diversifying their client networks
- Giving as much as they expect to get from every relationship
- Constantly pruning, renewing, and reshaping their networks frequently
Your most precious asset in sales are your clients. Question becomes… are you consistently treating them as precious assets or only during “selling time”?
HOP OFF THE ‘COASTERS AND INVEST IN RELATIONSHIPS
“The key to making money is to stay invested.”
Here’s a question for all of you… Do you value your client relationships?
I bet most of you just shouted. “Hell yeah, I value them!”
Well… then here’s my next question…
How many hours this past week did you put into growing your client relationships?
What concerns me is that many in sales fail to put in the time and effort necessary to grow their client relationships beyond the surface level.
Think of client attrition and now ask yourself, “What have I done to invest in them?”
SALES PROFESSIONALS INVEST
Elite professionals, the best of the best, spend heartfelt hours every week investing in their client relationships. They commit to listening and learning something new about their clients. They show appreciation and constantly thank them for their business.
There’s no better investment you can make than to invest in your clients.
Sales professionals understand and make daily deposits in their client’s emotional bank account. They understand every investment they make, pays dividends now, next month and into the future.
Stop waiting for the next great sales lead or whatever magical mysterious event you think will occur, such as the “sales easy switch”.
Start right now, commit, and invest in your clients.
INVEST AND COLLECT
Investing in your client relationships is one of the most rewarding investments you can make. These relationships will open new doors, providing you with new opportunities which in turn, provides you long term sales stability.
Without building “relationship capital” with your clients then how can you keep a consistent, well flowing sales funnel?
To quote Dr. Dharius Daniels,
“All relationships are consequential. They are catalytic. They push us forward or hold us back. They propel us into purpose or push us into pain. They bring joy or bring sorrow. They are incredibly impactful.”
It is up to you how you nurture your client relationships.
What impact are you having with your clients? How would they describe it? Purposeful and powerful relationships matter. They will propel you into new sales heights.
What will you do to keep off the relationship rollercoaster?
Your sales career shouldn’t be an ‘E’ ticket ride.
Originally published on Larry Levine’s LinkedIn.