This is the second in a series of articles to help you gain confidence in your relationship selling and build relationship capital in the conference room.
Quarterly board meetings may happen regularly, but that doesn’t mean they should happen on autopilot. Each meeting with your board members is a chance to strengthen your relationship with your firm’s key stakeholders while also building your industry reputation.
By using these three strategies to boost relationship capital during board meetings, you’ll be better able to leverage your board’s network and sphere of influence in the future to benefit your entire firm.
1. Build trust.
For instance, many behaviorists advise maintaining eye contact when speaking, but did you know that showing a little skin can also make you seem more trustworthy? And no, we’re not talking about short shorts and deep v-necks at the office. But rolling up your sleeves and baring your forearms and palms offers subtle clues that you’re an open, approachable person. Just keep it professional, please.
“Your board is a well of relationship capital into which you should be tapping regularly.”
2. Don’t be afraid to ask for favors.
Of course, there’s a right way and a wrong way to make that ask. Maintain goodwill in the boardroom by taking these three steps:
- First, let them know that you’re asking for a favor.
- Then, let them know what the favor is, and why you need it—after all, “people react positively to the word ‘because’.”
- Finally, and most importantly, give them a chance to opt-out. No one like feeling obligated, and offering someone the chance to say “no” makes it far more likely that you’ll hear “yes.”
3. Secure the warm introduction.
Questions like “Do you know anyone who might be interested in helping with this project?” create work for your board members, and they may grow fatigued or irritated with such non-specific requests. But when you ask for an introduction to a specific person, for a specific purpose, you create a no-cost scenario for them, which in turn makes them more likely to help you
RelSci is a technology solutions company that helps create competitive advantage for organizations through a crucial yet vastly underutilized asset: relationship capital with influential decision makers. Learn more about our leading relationship mapping software at relsci.com.