Relationship on-boardingHere is a novel idea: strategic relationship on-boarding. You’ve heard the adage that people don’t leave jobs; they leave managers. I wonder, during their employment, how or what do people learn about how their company builds and values relationships?

We teach new hires all about our company, products, services, maybe even competitive landscape and key market trends, yet seldom do we help employees understand how to build strategic relationships within and outside of our company!

I’ve seen both formal and informal mentoring programs that are world class in every aspect of their design, development, and delivery, yet are missing this crucial component.

The following questions all lead to the same answer…flawed assumptions:

  • Is it because we assume new employees should already have learned this skill?
  • If they came from a Big Name organization, do we assume they learned these skills there?
  • Or do we not think it’s an important topic simply because a new hire is outgoing, or the person’s specific job doesn’t require building relationships?

In our consulting work with public and private companies, large and small, we see employees of varying business stature reach a job or a career plateau, get bored, and leave because they lack the willingness and ability to build strategic relationships—in their teams, across departments, across the organization, or externally with key market influencers.

What are some of the ways you have found successful to show how your company builds and values relationships?

To learn more, read the revised and updated Relationship Economics paperback edition with 40 percent new content, including an all-new chapter 10 on social media and business relationships (Wiley, Feb. 2011).

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