Developing Urgency by Building Relationships in Business With Patience

7 Tips to Turn Into Relationship Building Habits

You don’t win an Olympic gold medal by just turning up. You must train consistently, listen to the advice of others, and develop relationships that will help your progress. That’s not to say you shouldn’t act urgently. You must. But you build urgency in your quest by being patient.

It’s the same in business. You run a fitness business. You want to grow. The potential for huge success is there. For that potential to be realized, you must have the right people on board. Building this kind of relationship takes time, but it is a business process you must not ignore.

Why building relationships is important for business

Building professional relationships is key in business. As we discussed in our article, ‘Can your professional network balance your life?’, a professional network has the power to deliver a high-performing team that is constantly and consistently in your corner.

As well as developing professional relationships, you should also build business relationships with your clients. This will help to:

  • Retain your current clients

  • Improve your reputation

  • Deliver referral business

The business relationships you build today may take weeks, months, perhaps even years to bear fruit. Rest assured, though, they will.

7 ways to build trust in business relationships

The key trait in a relationship is trust. That simply cannot be earned quickly. It takes a strategic approach, developing habits that align with and demonstrate your values as an entrepreneur. The following seven habits will help to keep your fitness business fit for business.

  1. Be consistent with client contact

Don’t let too much time pass between contact with your clients. Put a system in place that prompts you to reach out, say ‘hi’, and ensure they are looked after and loved.

  1. Give without expecting to receive

Learn about your clients – what they desire most, what their problems are, and how you can help them best. Then do it. Help them, without expectations of anything in return. You may find that they need to be referred – to someone in your network. That’s a double whammy of giving that will help build trust and deliver its payback later.

  1. Make it easy for clients to complain

No one likes to hear a complaint, right? Yet being open to feedback – negative as well as positive – will help you deliver better service to your clients. Invite feedback often. Listen to complaints, learn to understand underlying issues, and then deal with them positively.

The very worst thing you can say is, “If you don’t like it, there’s the door”. You’ll get a reputation of being uncaring and only concerned about your profits. Instead, practice saying, “What is it you don’t like? Here’s the door. Come in. Let’s speak about it.”

  1. Be honest intelligently

Your clients should see you as the expert in your field – and you are. This doesn’t mean you know everything. Especially in fitness technology businesses, innovation is moving the industry at breakneck pace.

If you’re asked a question or for your opinion and you don’t know how best to respond, be honest. Don’t try to wing it. Your honesty will win you respect. What will win you even more respect is when you call back the following day with the answer they seek.

  1. Admit your mistakes

We’re all only human. We all make mistakes. 

If you or your team makes a mistake, own the error. Explain to your client what went wrong, and how you plan to fix it. You’ll find the client will stay with you – especially if you have previously provided great service – and work with you to resolve the issue.

  1. Excel in customer service

A consumer survey by Accenture found that 61% of customers that changed their service providers did so because of poor customer service. In other research by American Express, it was found that a client will tell 15 other people about poor customer service. Bang goes your reputation. Yet this is easy to remedy:

  • Train your people to give great customer service

  • Respond to queries promptly

  • Be ready to offer a special offer (with the chance to upsell)

  • Follow the rules in tips 1 to 5 above

Provide great customer service to your clients, and you will earn their trust and respect – and many referrals.

  1. Show your gratitude

No matter how unique your business, there is always an alternative. Make sure you thank your clients for their business. When you do, make it personal. Address the thanks to your contact or your client directly.

Consistency – the key to building relationships in business

Habits are formed over time. So are business relationships. The key to forming great habits is to practice them consistently. Soon they become second nature. When they do, you will find that building business relationships that deliver growth also becomes second nature. And when you need to act with urgency, you’ll have the network to help you.

However, you cannot (and must not) expect your contacts, your network, and your clients to give back immediately. Instead, develop your business and the people in it to be relationship builders. Each is another block in the foundation of your business.

We’d love to hear from you: 

How much time do you spend on relationship building each day?

What habits have you embedded?

What systems do you use to help you to keep track of your client relationships?

Is there anything you’re struggling with, or that you wish you could do better?

Let us know in the comments below. Or, if you’d prefer, get in touch and we’ll share our most effective networking secrets with you.

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