I often ask this of the leaders I coach and I get all types of responses from, “that sounds so calculated, “I like more of an organic approach” to “I haven’t thought about that lately” to “I don’t have one, can you help me think it through?”
Whatever reaction you had to the title of the blog is probably a good indication of what bias or perception you hold about strategically building relationships. Research shows that women are excellent connectors however some fail to leverage their relationships. The challenge here is usually a mindset challenge and not a lack of knowledge or skill.
If you think your mindset and/or strategy could use a tune up and want a few ideas about how to proceed, read on!
I believe leaders inspire action through others and therefore relationships are the currency of leadership.
Like anything that’s important in work and life, you are more successful when you set a clear intention and lay out a plan. The same is true for building relationships.
Building relationships strategically is not rocket science; however, it does require some thinking and some action.
Use our “Relationship Building Strategy” resource to help you get started:
Choose your mindset - What is your current thinking on the idea of strategically building relationships? How is your mindset supporting your strategy? Choose the mindset that will best support you and write it down.
Audit your network - Start with a quick audit of your network. Do a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) to help you discover who you have and who you are missing.
Focus your plan - choose up to five people or groups and build a plan for connection. Include at least one target group - a new connection you want to create. Develop a next wise action to find, nurture and/or elevate each connection. Automate the connection points in your calendar.
Revisit your plan - take time each month or quarter to revisit your plan to assess progress and make adjustments.
Building relationships strategically requires the right mindset and the right plan. Book 30 minutes with yourself this week to start the process!