Business relationships are top of mind for me on Valentine’s Day. I’m single, so I have to broaden the concept of love. In the business realm, I love people with big hearts. Like Chris Kuban, owner of Chemistry PR and Multimedia, one of my competitors.
On Friday, Chris spent 90 minutes with me – a long time for a first meeting. Chris is the immediate past-president of the St. Louis Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America. He reached out to me since I’m also a chapter member and we had never met, me being a recent transplant to this side of Missouri.
He showed me around his cool, well-equipped multimedia operation. Then he told me how he built his business and gave me some great PR tips and ideas. I appreciated his authenticity and generosity.
I think we had mutual motives – to explore how to build a business relationship leading to collaboration. Perfect. I’m a video producer who hires videographers and editors on contract. He said I can hire his team. I have connections in higher education, which is also one of his verticals. We can work together, I told him.
Chris is smart for reaching out to me because connections are the way to build your business. Maybe he contacted me because he has been listening to Jeb Blount’s Fanatical Prospecting over and over. He recommended the book and I’m halfway through it. Look out world!
While new clients are great, business relationships are much more than potential referral sources. Who couldn’t use some support and people with whom to celebrate?
15,000 Connections Lead to Publishing Success
CBS Sunday Morning is my favorite show and today they did it again. A story illustrates what I’ve been thinking about. Suleika Jaouad graduated from Princeton then right away learned she had leukemia. Doctors said she had a one in three chance of surviving.
During four years of chemotherapy, Suleika documented her experiences in a column in the New York Times. Fifteen thousand people from around the country wrote to support her. After beating cancer, Suleika drove around the country thanking cancer survivors and other new friends who had written to her. What an act of generosity! Now she has a bestselling book about her journey, Between Two Kingdoms: A Memoir of Life Interrupted.
Business Relationship Supported Me
I had thyroid cancer last summer and experienced the power of connecting with another cancer patient. Just one, because I didn’t go public with my condition since it was short-lived. I found out I had cancer in May, had my thyroid removed in June, and in July learned the cancer had not spread. Thank God.
The friend who supported me was a professional connection on Facebook. When she posted about her cancer treatment I messaged her. Next thing you know we were talking on the phone. That’s the first time I have met someone on Facebook then talked on the phone! We encouraged each other and promised to be there if we needed to talk again. We haven’t talked since then, but that conversation meant a lot to me. There are so many people who believe in authenticity and quite a few on my social media friends’ lists!
Give Love Daily
My takeaway for Valentine’s Day is to give love. We have the opportunity to do this every day.
When we embrace generosity and authenticity, we often reap unimaginable rewards. As America works to heal our societal wounds, the more connections we make the more opportunities we will have to understand each other and support each other in good times and bad.