Attention Sales World... Are You Tending To Your Relational Garden?Jan 30, 2023
“If you wish to make anything grow, you must understand it, and understand it in a very real sense. ‘Green fingers’ are a fact, and a mystery only to the unpracticed. But green fingers are the extensions of a verdant heart.”
If you wish to grow your client relationships, you must understand them, and understand them in a very real sense.
Your clients are undeniably one of your most precious assets. Without them would you exist in sales?
The more you understand that meaningful and credible relationships matter, the more successful you will become, end of story, plain and simple.
Building authentic relationships and connecting with your clients is mission critical to your success.
Here's a question for all of you...
Do you think your clients crave the same? Absolutely, they crave the same and it is up to you to find this out.
We as humans crave and value relationships.
They are a part of human nature. We long for and value relationships. It's hard-wired in our DNA.
The more you give, ultimately the more you receive.
Answer the following... On a scale of 1-10...
- How well are you personally and intentionally engaging with your clients?
- Are you authentically investing in building authentic relationships?
- Are you doing what they believe is necessary?
Your clients smell what you're cooking and not cooking really fast.
Trust is the foundation of a credible and healthy relationship.
Your ability to build trust and credibility is crucial to maintaining healthy client relationships. Lack of credibility and believability, causes your clients to not trust you.
Lack of trust will cost you your clients and will diminish your ability to consistently drive sales sustainability.
Soft skills will yield you hard dollars!
Building and maintaining authentic relationships requires work. You must authentically invest to collect on the relationship.
This requires careful planning, consistency, discipline and heart to nurture relationships to become an integral part of your clients' lives.
You just can't do this with a monthly call, a quarterly visit, a semi-annual visit or the classics... "I'm checking in with you" or "Just touching base to make sure everything is OK."
“Whether they stem from business or personal situations, our relationships are what support us, connect us, and allow us to progress in all aspects of our lives.”
Michelle Tillis Lederman
"Without hard work, nothing grows but weeds."
Gordon B. Hinckley
Without hard work, discipline and action, nothing will grow in your clients' accounts.
All you will attract are shiny sales professionals who understand what it means to build authentic relationships and meaningful business value.
With water, fertilizer, and light, a healthy client relationship can turn into an exquisite garden of sales nourishment.
Jim Rohn once said,
"If you rest too long the weeds take the garden."
Do you have a green thumb when tending to your relationship garden?
Fail to water your garden and we know what happens. A relationship which is started, but not watered will wither and die, it is the natural order of things.
Gardening is a process. Planting is a task.
A garden which is planted, then not tended, cultivated or cared for, ultimately will grow weeds, wither and die.
ARE YOU ALLOWING WEEDS TO GROW IN YOUR RELATIONAL GARDEN?
Are you paying attention to the weeds in your relational garden?
If you want healthy, harmonious and heartfelt client relationships, then you must pay attention to the weeds.
Weeds have a way of creeping into your garden of client relationships. They choke the life out of fruitful growth, as they spread like crabgrass in your sales lawn.
Weeds thrive and flourish when you do not pay attention to them, and the same applies to your client relationships.
Here are signs you might be growing weeds...
- You only come around when you want something, like a sale.
- You take more than you give.
- You leave people hanging by not following through with your commitments.
- You make promises you don’t keep.
- You communicate inconsistently and sparingly.
- You are nowhere to be found when your clients need you.
How many of you have walked into your relationship garden only to find that it has been decimated from neglect (no deposits of relational trust) and overrun with weeds (competitors)?
Sales professionals fertilize their relationship garden while sales reps struggle to water their garden.
The expert gardener never skips a day of weeding or watering. The garden may not look much different, but they know over time the results reflect their effort.
A sales professional never skips a day cultivating their relationship garden. They realize the more they tend to their garden the more relationships soon blossom.
Unfortunately, many sales reps are like average gardeners. They blame nature for burning their plants (clients), not raining enough, bugs, weeds, poor soil and crappy results.
However, sales professionals are expert gardeners. They shield their plants (clients) from getting burned, provide water during droughts, protect against bugs (competitors), pull weeds, enrich the soil and enjoy spectacular results.
BUILD YOUR TRUST GARDEN
"No occupation is so delightful to me as the culture of the earth, and no culture comparable to that of the garden."
I believe gardening is a powerful example for the lifecycle of a process. I believe there is a direct correlation between what it takes to grow a beautiful garden and what it takes to build trust with your clients.
Growing a relationship garden with your clients involves the commitment of a shared vision, deep respect, ongoing mutual effort, and patience.
If you don't sow it, you can't build trust
Whether you are a sales leader or a salesperson, it doesn’t matter how rich the soil is in your clients' garden, how much sunlight it receives, or how often you water, if you don’t sow the seeds, you won’t have any plants (sales).
At this point, you might be saying to yourself that this sounds a bit elementary or too basic, well, that’s because it is.
Trust in client relationships begins by demonstrating your trustworthiness.
You reap what you sow
Translated, this old proverb says that future consequences are inevitably shaped by present actions.
What present actions are you taking as you tend to your relational garden?
I encourage you to sow these seeds of trust and watch what starts to bloom.
- Constantly learn, grow, and get better at what you do.
- Generously share your expertise with others.
- Focus on doing the right thing and doing things right.
- Make ethical and moral choices.
- Tell the truth.
- Be authentic and genuine.
- Never waiver from your promises or commitments.
- Just give a rip!
When you sow seeds of trust, you're inviting people in not pushing them away. You're creating common grounds, common good, and community. Isn't this what you want?
The loyalty and trust you build with your clients will continue to reward you in unexpected ways, if you fertilize your relationship garden.
“A garden requires patient labor attention. Plants do not grow merely to satisfy ambitions or to fulfill good intentions. They thrive because someone expended effort on them.”
Liberty Hyde Bailey
Be authentic, share your gifts, maintain and cast your vision, bring sincerity and most of all bring authentic relationships combined with meaningful business value to your client gardens.
Simply just give a rip!
Remember... relational gardening adds years to your sales life.
Originally published on Larry Levine's LinkedIn.