The Secret to Building Strong Business Relationships

Business Development Plan: The Secret to Building Stronger Business Relationships

The business development plan for growth is a requirement for any business. Here is a different outlook to shaping your plan via building strong business relationships.

You know how it goes when you’ve just started dating someone new and you find yourself doing all the fun stuff together. You are going to a theme park and riding on a roller coaster, you spend the night at the beach, you go ice skating, concerts, movies and basically – breaking your routine!

But why do we tend to do that? It’s because we want to get to know one another better and through that build our relationship.

A similar concept applies to building strong business relationships.

Business Development Plan: The Secret to Building Stronger Relationships

Spice up your business making routine

Sharing a positive experience with someone else which is a little uncommon or ‘out of the box’, will connect you better. This is a great way to leverage your networking efforts with a colleague, potential client, competitor, fellow businessman and even a friend. This should be scheduled into your business development plan in an effort to bring value into your future relationships.

To do so, invite one of your network friends for a meeting and make it a little or more different than what is expected… breaking your routine can come in small adjustments that will change the atmosphere for the best.

One of the most popular ways to building strong business relationships is to get to know someone through the ‘businessman’s golf culture’. It’s no coincidence that golf has become the ultimate activity for business people to build stronger relationships upon – it is least expected to top the bill on your business development plan, but nevertheless, it’s a routine you should consider scheduling in.

A game of golf lasts a couple of good hours, which is a long time to spend talking to someone on the golf course and get to know him or her.

Golf requires a different level of skills like high level of concentration, decision making, strategic thinking, coolness and others that are also important in the business world. The players ‘read’ the way the other person plays and make their opinion on whether they should do business together. It’s true, business does get done on a golf course but first, you must invest time in yourself by doing these alternative activities as Chris Brogan explains here. Think outside the box or think different, it will make the biggest different to your business life.

Changing the way you meet with other business colleagues can benefit you in several ways:

– Building strong business relationships

– Get to know one another and discover new personality traits

– Openness to the other person – Give & take

– Creation of shared memories that bonds people better

– Awareness and memory for details in uncommon situations

– A positive impact on your business development plan

Guidelines to creating ‘out of the box’ business meetings


Step 1Adjust the experience for the other person in order to get closer

Offer to do something the other person would appreciate and love doing; Invite the person for a Jazz concert you both like, suggest to meet at his or her favorite restaurant, go horse riding together or even meet at the main library and discuss about a new book you like along with discussing business and more.

These type of experiences can create a greater bond, create an open state of mind and contribute in creating solid friendships.

Step 2Choose activities that will help you learn about the other person

Certain activities can reveal other personality traits in people we know. Games provide a great space to get to know others as they tackle unexpected situations that need to be solved: Poker, casino, bowling, pool game, golf and the like.

These type of activities teach you a lot about the other person and vice versa. It also strengthens your business development plan and personal relationship as you experienced fun and enjoyable moments with one another. Building strong business relationships should be fun and engaging for both parties involved.

Step 3Be Spontaneous – the best things come out of it!

Make a spontaneous decision to do something differently. You are about to meet someone, but suddenly you want to surprise, excite, do as your own will tells you to, and get the other person to say “yes” and join you;

Go sailing – meeting by the sea, play music, adds a very interesting persona to your meeting. Go on a field / location trip, invite the meeting to your house among many other possibilities…

These type of activities can add a ‘lively’ feeling to your business relationship; it can express your creativity, intuition, personality and you will create memories that last a long time with stronger friendships.

Now it’s your turn, I would like to know how you’ve changed the game and experienced unforgettable meetings? How has it affected your business relationships and has it opened up doors to more valuable business referrals? Has what you have done been effective in moulding your business development plan?

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  • Marius Fermi

    Great article Lirone! I’m a real fan of going that extra mile to make sure the client/partner feels comfortable when they leave the office. One of the biggest no-no’s I find is trying to get them to come to your office, not only is this a position of power it’s very intimidating.

    Now you’ve mentioned golf, I’m craving a round on these gloriously sunny days!

    • Lirone Glikman

      Thanks Marius! It’s definitely about choosing the right way and place to meet. we need to form a comfortable ground in order for the meeting to succeed.

      Thanks god it’s sunny again.. Enjoy 🙂

  • Thanks Lirone, its a good article. My business is all about building good relationships with people and our clients. If you want to build a good business, you need strong relations with clients, and only after that they will give much repeat business.

    1 question. For somebody with very little time what is the best way to build this strong relationship?

    • Lirone Glikman

      Hi There and thank you for your great comment!
      It’s a good question.. let me tell you that almost everyone I know, including me shares the same problem.
      As guiding lines I think you should find your own “system” to nurture and grow your relationships based on your schedule. You would need to act upon it, think of it as part of your business marketing plan, because that’s what it is.

      To make it efficient you can write down the names of strategic people you wish to know more-(to focus your efforts.)
      Set a weekly or daily time in your schedule to make phone calls or meetings with these people and that way you will retain the relationship.

      Attend industry events to extend your network or a networking group. That’s in short.

      You can get more ideas and tactics on my personal blog.

      Hope this helps! Cheers!

  • Chi Chi

    Excellent post, Lirone! So glad you had a safe and fun trip to NYC! Your article/post was right on point. I really liked how you highlighted the benefits of building the strong relationships so that we have a clearer view and understanding. I also network with colleagues and friends through the game of golf. I would also add involvement in community volunteering or service projects as a way to build strong relationships. Working alongside someone in a manner of helping others or the community can reveal someone’s passions/core values.
    Keep up the incredible and meaningful work!

    • Lirone Glikman

      Thank you Chi Chi for your endless care and support!
      Involvement in community and volunteering – what a great addition!
      it’s about doing something for a bigger cause that definitely connects people together from an honest deep place. Great insight!
      Do you have any tips from the golf course? I would love to know.
      The trip to NYC was great and inspiring in many ways. Thank you again!

  • Great post Lirone. I couldn’t agree more when you say ”
    Be Spontaneous – the best things come out of it!” I believe via spontaneity we bring out the best in each other. Saying this I have noticed, my best pieces of business have come from people who I know vaguely and not necessarily from close friends or strangers. Have you experienced this?

  • Salvi Florentin

    A very inspiring post that should get people thinking about better networking and giving time up for relationship building. Nice Lirone.

    • Lirone Glikman

      Thank you Salvi, I appreciate your comment!

  • Hi Lirone, this is a well produced post. I like the fact that you emphasise how ‘work’ and ‘play’ can come together to effectively create strong business relationships. It’s not all about work, work and work, you can enjoy what you do and treat others to something they enjoy and build rapport – relationships.

    • Lirone Glikman

      Hi Tony, thank you for your great comment! We spend most of our days working and growing our businesses so we might as well add enjoyable and fun moments to our business making routine!

  • Lewis S.

    Relationship building in business is not easy the way I se it. It take time and much effort to even get to the point of having a game of golf with the director of a company. That’s not to say it is impossible but simply, takes good timing, effort and a lot of persistence through constant contact.

    This is a very valid article with some great pointer! Thanks Lirone

    • Lirone Glikman

      I couldn’t agree with you more Lewis! It takes time and effort to build relationships and take them to the friendship space. However my article also suggests to make small changes in your meetings routine, even if you meet someone for the first time, you can stand out and show your personality or unique traits. You do so by providing him or her with a different experience than what they would expect.
      It’s about using your imagination, intuition or even the same “trick” every time as long as you both will share an interesting and uncommon experience. That is the key to bond you better as friends. Thank you for your comment!

  • Leon Tricche

    Definitely, outside the box this post! Well done Lirone. You are quite right, building relationships whether personal or business requires very similar attention.

    Quick question, how would you tackle making better relationships or customer relation with those the relationship has gone sour?

    • Lirone Glikman

      Leon Thank you for your lovely words! I am happy you found my article useful.

      As to your question, I have a general answer as each relationship may have its reasons or unsolved issues that led to a sour stage.

      I would say -“Give” and show you care; give attention, be in touch. When you constantly spreading good and love towards others, at some point they will get ‘softer’.

      In terms of out of the box experience- use the first guideline: “Adjust the experience for the other person in order to get closer”
      Initiate a meeting that combines things the person loves, if it’s a concert. a place or even a meaningful gift. All these gestures show you really care and made the efforts to make things better than they were.
      Thanks again!