Life’s fast pace and ever-evolving technology makes it easier and easier to avoid human interaction. You can get a lot done without the messiness of relationships and close personal connections. You can be efficient, calculated, and super-productive…just like a robot. And that is where the problem lies; we’re not robots. We were created to be in relationships with others.
The complexity of relationships is extremely beneficial in tangible and intangible ways. I’ve experienced this many times, as I’m sure you have too. As much as you may want to keep people at arm’s length, you will see the need to invest in people around you.
Key Benefits To Relationship Building
Whether you’re launching a new product, moving to a new city, or planning a wedding – the talents and services of others are just a few of the invaluable gifts that your key relationships can provide, along your life’s journey.
Thirty years ago when my husband and I married, we relied heavily on the generosity of our family, friends, co-workers and even past teachers. They all gave us the gift of their talents and services. From the flowers (mother made the bouquets), to the cake (co-worker), to the reception hall (manager), to the photographer (photography teacher) to the band (spouse’s Sergeant in the National Guard/family band)–all were given to us as a gift or at a very low rate. Because of this, we were able to have a very low-cost wedding. This doesn’t just happen. We had put time into building these relationships over the years. These were the ‘doing life together’ relationships that led to those family and friends wanting to give us their gift of time, talent and service.
The Power of Relationships with Referrals – Networking
When you want to promote a new product for work, the people who know you best and want to see you succeed will roll up their sleeves and support your efforts. It is a thrill to see something grow from a grassroots effort, especially when you are offering support every step of the way.
When you are looking for a new service provider – for personal or professional reasons – the referral of a trusted relationship relieves the pressure of researching and combing through the multitude of possibilities.
We know the power of referrals first hand at Centennial. Ninety-eight percent (98%) of our placed candidates come from referrals– people we have hired in the past–or from our trusted advisors or business partners. When someone knows you well enough, you can trust in the referrals they provide. In our case, this enhances both our candidate and client relations.
The Power of Encouragement from a Trusted Relationship
Encouragement is another priceless gift that means exceedingly more when it comes from a trusted relationship. You can read a lot of motivational quotes and feel pretty good, but when you receive encouragement from a true friend, you can tackle huge tasks. Maybe you have a daunting task ahead of you – something exciting or something painful – you need friends around you to check in on you and see you through. These relationships don’t happen overnight, they require time and investment.
Cultivating Relationships – Not a One-Way Flow
To cultivate these meaningful and profitable relationships, you need to give of yourself. Relationships are not one-way. No matter who you are and what your gifts are, you have something to offer. Make it a habit to ask people “What can I do for you?” You may discover that you have experience in something that people really value more than you would have ever thought.
This is something we see with transitioning candidates. When you are seeking your next job, it is critical to network with all your relationships. Be sure you’re not only on the receiving end of help during this time of transition. Find out what you can offer others and make it happen.
Prioritizing Your Relationships
I am still grateful for the people who took time to make our wedding affordable and memorable. It can be a challenge to seek out relationships that go beyond surface level. I challenge you to make relationships a priority this year. It’s a gift to you, and to others as well.