Have you ever seen a kid’s football team training and playing?
Right behind my house is a primary school, the very same one my son went to before I started homeschooling him.
Every Saturday morning the local youth football team trains on the school field.
Every season is the same.
The beginning of the season is when the kids all start getting to know each other, as do the parents and the helpers. It is utter chaos.
It starts with the awkward feeling out stage, that bit when each party just sorta observes each other. The parents, the staff and the kids are all trying to figure each other out. There’s no teamwork, every person for themselves.
After a few weeks of training they start to build trust and become closer. At this point the team starts to look a little like a team, training becomes less chaotic and more productive. The parents and staff are much more comfortable, as are the kids.
About half way into the season things change again. At this point the team has bonded and now passion starts to build. The passion that they all had individually for the game is starting to come together collectively. The team has never been so effective. Everything is going to plan, everyone is happy.
Towards the end of the season things intensify. Pressure starts to mount and cracks start to show. Arguments happen, fallouts happen and play is affected. The team is struggling to maintain its previous level of effectiveness.
At the end of the season everyone is relieved. A weight has been lifted off the shoulders of all and the team has never been closer and had such a tight bond.
Creating relationships with your customers is akin to a football season. It has the same stages. The ups and the downs. Bonds are built up, broken then built up again.
The only real difference is that your season is not a fixed amount of time. It could be over in a moment, or it could take a lifetime. The result is still the same.
Be prepared for a rollercoaster journey, enjoy the ride and learn as much as you can from it.
There will be highs and lows to any relationship, regardless of the context of that relationship.
Building trust with your customers takes time and patience, there is no overnight solution. Just do you and be kind, things will unfold as they should so long as you keep yourself on track to your goals.
When you hit a bump in the road have faith in your patience and empathy. Trust that they will see you through the darkest of times and out the other side, with your integrity intact.
Written By Mike on 29.07.2020