There are many people that are ready to embark on new relationships by meeting new people and leading productive lives. But they just don’t know how to establish the right connections for that to happen. Many times, it’s because they are one of two people: ‘Type A’ and ‘Type B’ people.
- Type A people are those that are naturally aggressive in getting things done, even if that means they have to do it themselves. People stand in their way when the focus is on the task at hand.
- Type B people would prefer to work in teams because they are extremely social but sometimes that can get in the way of truly completing projects because they don’t want to hurt others’ feelings along the way.
But whether you’re in the workplace or at a networking event, each of these ‘types’ need a little help in the soft skills department so that they can still get to the bottom line, but also have fun while doing so. In life and business, everything doesn’t have to be boring nor all that serious.
So what can you do to establish productive relationships in the workplace and in life?
1. Make eye contact
Making eye contact with someone shows you’re confident and you generally care about the other person. It also begins a dialogue and gives the other person permission to learn a little more about you. You can’t possibly go up to someone to start a conversation and not use eye contact. First impressions are lasting impressions. Make it count.
2. Stand tall and face the person
This should go without saying, but…
Slouching and turn your back shows not only lack of confidence but downright disrespect for the other person. Successful people who have it together shows by the stance they take when they walk in a room and meet other people. Let people see who you really are!
3. Give a firm handshake
At the Purpose Development Institute, we teach people the Hebrew numerical equivalent for a person’s hand. If you count the joints on one hand, it totals 14. Fourteen in Hebrew means hand. Now if you give a firm handshake with another person’s hand, both hands even 28 (the number of joints in both hands). And 28 in Hebrew equals ‘Power’. So when you approach someone the next time with a firm handshake, remember the power that the two of you could possess in business and in life.
We all have different timetables in reaching and realizing that being in healthy partnership is better than being on our own. -Hill Harper
4. Speak Clearly
It’s nothing like people having to ask you over and over again, “Can you repeat that?” or “Say that again.” When you first meet a person, it is important to immediately establish a connection and the best way to do that is to speak with clarity, speak up, and speak out. Project yourself enough as to not shout, but where people definitely get what you are saying. And they also get the points you are trying to make.
5. Establish boundaries
None of us want to tell our life stories and none of us want to keep our guards up either. But there has to be boundaries set early on so that people respectfully know what to do and what not to do. When you do that, there’s no ambiguity about how you roll and what you will and will not tolerate. It’s not being mean, it’s using wisdom in your affairs. It also shows the level of integrity you have to expect the same from every person you meet.
6. Exchange contact information
Once all of these things have been done, and you like the way things are going with this new connect, exchange contact information. Having a business card with the correct information on it goes a long way. It shows your professionalism and your sense of style as well. Follow up with the person at least a day or two after the initial connection and ask for another opportunity to meet up. This will hopefully allow the relationship to turn into a JV partnership or a friendship that’s solid for years to come.
What other positive gesture can one give to establish a productive relationship?