Sure, most of us have the good fortune to join family and friends during the Thanksgiving holiday and reflect on what we have to be grateful for: food, a roof over our heads, cars, college tuition. I am grateful for what I have, professionally and personally, more than you can imagine.
Give thanks in both the professional and personal sphere
But what about expressing that gratitude to those who technically have a very real and direct connection to making those and many of the other things you have in your life possible?
I’m talking about where our worlds collide: The Professional and Personal.
We all work hard for what we have. But the truth of the matter is, it is largely others who play a significant role in making what we have possible.
Think about it. Your client and other relationships are pivotal to your success. They don’t necessarily have to conduct business with you any more than you have to work with them. But some fortunate chemistry exists that creates a mutually beneficial reliance, and alliance, that works.
So as we move into what is traditionally a family holiday, use it as an opportunity, and hopefully, a mindset, to thank those you know in business: your customers, those colleagues who watch your back, your clients, and vendors. Think about who went an extra mile for you at your bank or your building. Those who referred you and those who introduce you to others.
Your connections to these people are nothing short of relationships. Cultivate them by showing that you appreciate them. Remember, new business is much more difficult to secure than repeat business.
Where to go from here:
- Lay the groundwork from the beginning. Create a “Thankfulness Plan,” and make it part of your business method. After speaking with a prospect, email them and thank them. After meeting them, send a written note. After the sale, send them or do something for them percentage proportionate.
- Do some “appreciation tracking.” Not exactly holiday-like, but after all, this is still business. Determine how much of what you make can be attributed to the various beneficial relationships you have in business. Log it. You might be surprised.
- Come up with a reasonable percentage of that amount, and set it aside for them. Take them out to dinner, send them sporting event tickets, get them something. Play it classy and low-key.
- Take some time and go out of your way to send them some business. A strong referral, especially a proactive one, can make things happen for them. Focus on what they do and who they need to continue to succeed.
The cooler and smoother you are about it, to more likely you are to have your gestures appreciated — and persuade others to follow your lead.