Yes, It's Business. But It's Still Personal
By Krista Jones
Less Al Pacino…more Meg Ryan.
There have been times over my career where I would catch myself saying, “It’s not personal, it’s just business.” It took someone on the other end of my comment to say to me, “Well, it may not be personal to you – but it is to ME!” And they were right! Shame on me, my business is about people and so it’s always personal! What a humbling experience for me that day.
I have read many articles since that day about this topic. I have been a part of many meetings to discuss this and I have walked away with some pretty simple, yet important things to help me make it more personal.
Remember your Conversations
When it comes to business it is important to create a database or spreadsheet of key clients or business partners. Be sure to document both personal and professional conversations so that it will help to “jog” your memory when looking back at them. It is important to set aside time each day to reach out to those that you need to maintain relationships with. Remember, it takes effort just like maintaining any other relationship. As in any relationship, you must be willing to give, share and support, not just take or receive.
Maintain your Relationships
Relationships are all founded the same way – so why would you treat your business relationships any different than any other relationships? Both take effort to maintain, keeping up regular communication, checking in to see how they are doing, recognizing when they need a “pick me up” or recognizing when they are asking for help or assistance on something. Failure to put enough time and effort into nurturing relationships can cause them to fade away. It is too easy to get caught up in the long work days and neglect relationships.
Remember your Coworkers
It is important to apply the same principles for your co-workers. Be sure to ask how their spouse is feeling since they had surgery or how the kids ballgames went this weekend? All types of business relationships need time and attention. People are always more forgiving when you slip up and more helpful when you are in need , if you’ve fostered a more personal relationship.
Work will be more enjoyable, easier and more successful if you make more of your business relationships personal.
This year, let’s be less Al Pacino…and more Meg Ryan