Studying about the value of building business relationships over the years as an entrepreneur has given me a good understanding of how it works. It’s proven that people purchase from people that they have a relationship with given the chance. Building a business relationship instills trust whether it’s been established from prior sales or maybe just a conversation. Wouldn’t you purchase from someone that you know and trust?
I had someone say to me about a client who sells products online…”they just sell to their friends”. My response was of course; don’t you buy as much as you can from people you know or have a relationship with?
Building Business Relationships a New Perspective
While traveling last year, I saw this concept work first hand in a way that I didn’t expect. The experience was very touching and gave me the perspective on how important relationship building is for personal growth as well as business growth.
The last 10 years my husband and I have been traveling to Cozumel, México. We have stayed as long as a month at a time. I’m very fortune that I can work remotely from almost anywhere; all I need is the Internet and my computer, which has made this possible.
We’ve always rented transportation while there and we’ve always rented from the same company. The same owner and same two guys have always worked there, Thomas and Cesar. We’ve gotten to know them very well over the years and have built a mutual trust. That trust includes that we’ll take care of their product and we trust that they’ll provide us with a reasonable price. We’ve gotten to know them personally over the years and always look forward to seeing them the following year. They always ask when we’re coming back, too.
Changes are inevitable as the years go by and this year was the year for change. The rental business had been sold due to the owner passing away. Thomas and Cesar had to find a new place to work.
This year when we arrived much to our surprise we had to look for a new rental company. As we searched we also asked for information about our two friends.
Renewing Business Relationships
We checked out business after business walking up and down the streets we turned the corner and there was Thomas with a big smile. One of the other business owners called him to say that we were looking for him so he walked to meet us.
We chatted and ask about his family, talked to his daughter on the phone who always called my husband Abuelo (Grandpa). We asked about Cesar, who we learned worked for a different company.
Wanting to rent a scooter, we asked Thomas if this is possible, he asked, “how much did we pay last time?” Prices are all over the board. He worked his calculator a little then said, “Come, follow me”. His English is better than our Spanish but sometimes things are lost in translation. We walked and talked and passed the rental yard where he worked. Didn’t think too much about it but did wonder why.
Following Thomas, we crossed the street and went into another rental company. Much to our surprise there was Cesar! We chatted for a while, catching up. Thomas left saying we are in good hands, gave us his private cell number, we made a time to meet he and his daughter, now in high school, for coffee the next evening.
Cesar was able to rent to us for the same price as in the past, which was almost half the going rate. He also gave us his cell phone number in case we needed anything at all, he said to please call. We felt very well taken care of.
Knowing that we have friends here on the island is a great comfort when so far away from home. The value of building that business relationship over the years made for an easy business transaction and it was personally gratifying, too.
Another strong business relationship that we have built on the island is with Tony the owner of Burritos Gorditos. Over the past years my husband would take Tony’s burritos to eat during the day when out fishing. He can always count on Tony having his burritos ready for pick up the night before upon request and made perfectly for him.
There are many places to get burritos but we will always go to Tony’s. He is friendly, always knows who you are, and likes to chat about the island and his life on it.
These type of business standards equals success!