Skills for Building Business Relationships

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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Tara Schofield

Tara has a PhD in Marketing & Management

You can build solid, positive relationships with co-workers, clients, and vendors. By following the steps in this lesson, you will have the skills to build long-standing business relationships.

Importance of Relationship Skills

We all know people that we don't trust or would not want to work with. We also know people that we respect and would gladly do business with. Being skilled in building business relationships is important when working with other people and for having success in your job and having positive relationships with co-workers and customers. Whether you work independently or are an employee, knowing how to build business relationships is vital to your success in the corporate world.

Let's imagine you own a bookkeeping service. As you have just opened your business, you are anxious to get new clients. Although you have plenty of personal friends, you realize you need to build your professional relationships. To earn the business of others, you must improve your skills in building bonds with others who may need your services.

Skills Needed to Build Relationships

There are many skills that are helpful in professional associations. Some of the most critical skills include having open communication, strong people skills, trust, respect, and positivity.

Open Communication

Open communication is the ability to share information in a timely basis, with the right people, and with the appropriate intensity. Additionally, it requires being able to receive information from others, even if it is difficult to hear or creates more stress or work for you. Another consideration is the importance of keeping private details confidential, ensuring only the necessary parties are involved in the communication. When all parties are committed to open communication, there is less fighting or backstabbing because the people who are involved in a situation are included in the sharing of facts and information.

In running your accounting business, you are committed to keeping clients informed about their finances, including problems you may find when updating their records. For instance, if you find a client is having money problems, you are thorough in explaining their financial status to them and make appropriate recommendations. You also require your staff to keep details about each of your clients' financial situations private, and they know not to share details with anyone that is not involved with the account.

People Skills

Putting people at ease, carrying a conversation, and asking appropriate questions are important aspects of people skills that help in building relationships. As people feel more comfortable with you, they share more and are more connected to you.

When you meet with clients, you spend a few minutes getting caught up on their lives and having a friendly conversation before jumping into their financial details. This helps strengthen the bond and deepen their relationship with you as their bookkeeper.

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