The following article is adapted from www.StevePavlina.com with kind permission of Steve Pavlina.
This is part seven of a ten-part series of articles by Steve Pavlina about the mistakes made by the newly self-employed.
Ten Stupid Mistakes Made By The Newly Self-Employed – Mistake No. 7: Being Too Formal
I’ll say it again.
Business is built on relationships.
In some settings a certain degree of formality is appropriate, but in most business situations being too formal only gets in the way.
Business relationships work best when there’s a decent human-to-human connection behind them.
I think it’s a mistake to be too formal even when looking to establish new business relationships. If someone mails me a letter that starts with “Dear Mr. Pavlina” and then goes on to explain a long-winded business proposal, I’ll usually just trash it, especially if it uses the word “we” a lot.
Better to fire off an email with a “Hi Steve,” and just ask me very informally if I’m interested in the kind of arrangement you’re seeking. It saves time and opens the door to a real human relationship.
Human beings don’t want to build relationships with faceless corporations. They only want relationships with other human beings. Sometimes with animals too I suppose.
So treat your business relationships like friendships (or potential friendships).
Formality puts up walls, and walls don’t foster good business relationships. No one is loyal to a wall… except the one in China.
Formality is boring and tedious.
People want to enjoy their work. If someone address me like a computer, I’ll respond in kind — by hitting delete.
But if someone demonstrates they have a real personality and a good sense of humor -then a connection is far more likely.
About the Author
Steve Pavlina of www.StevePavlina.com is a highly successful personal development blogger who has written more than 1000 articles and recorded many audio programs on a range of self-help topics. He is a frequent guest on radio and Internet radio shows.
Steve’s book Personal Development for Smart People: The Conscious Pursuit of Personal Growth is published by Hay House and has now been translated into a dozen different languages.
To read reviews or to purchase a copy of Personal Development for Smart People: The Conscious Pursuit of Personal Growth by Steve Pavlina visit www.amazon.com