In the modern age of automated communication and instant gratification, the importance of the 'human touch' in business may seem anachronistic. Yet, this very age-old strategy of forming strong, trust-based relationships is what holds the key to lasting success. Contrary to the ubiquitous 'hustle for a fast buck' trend, establishing deep-rooted relationships provides a strong foundation for future growth. It is a fallacy that technology replaces the need for human collaboration. On the contrary, humans working together, sharing ideas and nurturing relationships can unlock greater levels of creative innovation, strategic design and extraordinary successes in global businesses than ever imagined.

The 6 Fundamentals of Relationship Business

So, how do we build these strong relationships with new and existing clients or partners? It boils down to six fundamental principles: being authentic, vulnerable, curious, daring, ready and courageous.

  1. Be Authentic: Authenticity is a magnetic virtue in the realm of business relationships. In an era of facades and half-truths, authenticity stands out like a beacon of hope. When we embody who we are, we connect naturally with others on a deeper level, fostering an even deeper level of trust. Remember, your true value lies not in a facade but in being your authentic self.

  2. Be Vulnerable: Vulnerability does not signify weakness or naivety; it demonstrates openness and honesty, fostering a sense of trust and connection. Sharing your thoughts, fears, and hopes with your partners or clients builds a layer of emotional connection that is imperative in forming robust relationships. It humanises your business approach, shifting the narrative from pure profit-driven to value-based, driving mutual understanding and respect.

  3. Be Curious: Curiosity is the compass that leads us to explore mutual areas of value. By showing an interest in your partners' or clients' world, you create a two-way exchange, facilitating the growth of a strong, mutually beneficial relationship. This exploration is not about questioning their practices but understanding them and identifying ways to add value to their world.

  4. Be Daring: Daring to dream - to explore the 'what ifs' and 'how might we's' - sets apart the extraordinary from the ordinary. By daring to envisage bold, innovative ideas, you engage your partners or clients in an exciting shared vision; a journey embarked on together. This collective ambition is what drives the relationship forward and ensures its longevity.

  5. Be Ready: Being ready to scrutinise your actions and decisions every step of the way is critical to relationship building. Through validation and testing, you ensure your business is constantly aligned with its objectives, creating a culture of transparency and accountability. This openness not only strengthens the relationship, but also cultivates a shared commitment to success.

  6. Be Courageous: Last but certainly not least, be courageous. The journey towards achieving shared goals will invariably present challenges. Embracing these challenges, learning from them, leaning into them and being brave enough to adjust and adapt along the way; signifies courage. This quality engenders respect and fosters a culture of resilience, both crucial elements in a thriving business relationship.

Dream Big and Be Brave; Together

Building a business relationship based on trust doesn't happen overnight. It requires authenticity, vulnerability, curiosity, daring, readiness, and courage. The speed of business happens at the speed of trust, and by investing in these principles, you build a foundation for long-lasting success. Trust early, trust often, and dare to achieve a reality beyond your dreams; together. In the end, strong relationships are the cornerstone of resilient, sustainable and successful businesses, regardless of the ever-evolving technological landscape.