Trust is vital in business relationships. It determines our success in business development. Read these tips to build better business relationships.
Do you struggle to get your stakeholders to work with you? Maybe they don’t trust you enough, and that’s a problem in business development.
After all, as business developers, we thrive on personal relationships. However, if our partners, clients, or managers don’t perceive us as trustworthy, they won’t invest their time with us.
This means you won’t get partnerships, you won’t close deals and your manager will not be open to promoting you or even keeping you in the team.
In short, being successful in business development starts with building trust. The good news is that you can control the way people perceive you and be trustworthy in their eyes.
Build trust in business relationships
Business development is all about finding new opportunities to grow the company in the long term. Often opportunities arrive from your business relationships and trust plays an important factor. Therefore your first duty as a business developer is to build solid relationships with your stakeholders.
Before anything else, get to know your colleagues, partners, and customer base. Develop a genuine interest in your stakeholders, because when you show interest people tend to open up more. As humans, we like to feel important and if you take a genuine interest, the other party will feel they matter to you.
If they feel they are important, they will feel comfortable sharing their needs. Once you know what their needs are, you are in a better position to provide a relevant solution. The best way to achieve this is by asking questions and removing judgment from your communication.
3 Components of trust in business relationships
Trust doesn’t come on its own. There are certain elements you need to take into account when working on a business relationship: clarity, connection, and consistency.
1 – Clarity
The first component of trust is clarity. When you discuss with stakeholders, be clear in your message. Create messages that are clear and easy to understand.
Think of it this way: people like to engage with things when they understand them.
However, if the way you communicate about your company is confusing, your stakeholders will not be able to follow you. Make sure you use a simple, direct, and assertive communication style.
2 – Connection
The second component of trust is connection. As humans, we are social creatures and we naturally seek human connection. Deep connection makes us feel happy, fulfilled, and safe. This is true for both personal and business relationships.
Clients and partners want to work with someone they feel connected to and that shares the same values. Focus on getting to know your stakeholders and show your personality. Of course, using common sense!
3 – Consistency
The third component is consistency. The best way to build trust in business is to be consistent with your actions, even if that means doing repetitive tasks or not having immediate results.
Building trust requires time and in that time your relations will observe you. They will pay attention to your behaviors and if they are consistent they will perceive you as reliable. Being reliable will make you a valuable asset and will help you develop strong and long-lasting relationships.
How to build trust in business relationships remotely
With the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, business developers have had to make great adjustments. There is a rise in technology use, distance learning, and online work. On the one side, we gained a lot of flexibility, on the other a series of new challenges, especially when connecting with our stakeholders.
Many business development managers have reported that remote work has decreased their ability to build rapport compared to before.
Don’t let that discourage you. Although different, it is still possible to build genuine relationships even online. You just need to adapt your plan to the new circumstances.
1 – Leverage social media
One good way to build credibility and trust with your stakeholders is to leverage social media. Your customers and partners will definitely check you online when you’ll contact them.
If you are not active online you are missing out on a huge opportunity to build trust with your audience. By being present on digital channels, you give people the chance to understand how valuable you are as a professional.
People want to invest time in meaningful relationships.
If they see that you are passionate and competent about your job, they will be more likely to get in touch with you.
Use social media to share relevant content and show your expertise. Educate, inform, and teach your audience about your products and services. Respond to their queries, comments, and private messages. Give them honest information and advice.
The more value you put out there, the higher the chances to build strong business relationships.
2 – Use multiple channels
The second opportunity is to use multiple channels to connect with your stakeholders. For example, you can use emails. While it’s true that often emails are not read or ignored altogether, you can learn how to write effective emails that get replies. This will help you build rapport already in the first exchange and help you build trust.
Furthermore, you can take advantage of video calls. Although they are not the same as meeting in person, they offer at least the opportunity to see body language and facial expression. Your conversation will be more productive and feel more authentic.
Moreover, video calls help you be more present in every conversation and build trust. After all, when you call someone sitting at their homes they are inviting you to their private space. This intimacy is an important factor in building trust.
5 Tips to build trust in business relationships
Building trust in business relationships is a lengthy process. You need to be patient and stay consistent. But the rewards are huge and you’ll notice that your business development job will become easier as you build stronger relationships.
Here are 5 tips you can apply to become more trustworthy:
1 – Develop self-awareness
The first step to building trust is to know yourself. Be clear about your values, purpose, and ambitions. As a result, you will be able to create genuine connections.
2 – Share your opinions openly
Everyone values openness in communication. Therefore, don’t be afraid to share your opinions openly and genuinely. However, remember to keep it classy and respectful.
3 – Avoid vague communication
Whenever you communicate, avoid being vague in your message. Maintain clarity when you speak or write. Focus on the idea and ensure that others understand it easily and correctly.
4 – Tell the truth
As a business developer, telling the truth can be beneficial in many ways. Everyone knows where they stand, and what they are supposed to do. Tasks and processes are clear from the beginning, and everyone feels valued throughout.
5 – Show respect
Empathize with others and be respectful at all times. Listen carefully when others are talking and refer back to what they say to show you’re committed to that conversation. In return, you’ll gain trust and long-lasting relationships.
Trust is a key element for business development success. If you think you can improve your trust-building skills, then consider joining our platform. Our trainers will create a personalized learning plan to help you become more effective in your job.