Communication Can Hurt
As I have contended all along, there is no other factor in business as important at the Communications Factor. Interpersonal Communication is a skill, or an art, not something which comes naturally – unless you work at it.
I was on the phone with a business contact whom I’ve met only once. We’ve spoken on the phone a couple of times, and when it came time to “put up or shut up,” I tried, as tactfully as I could, to let him know I wasn’t interested in the service he provided.
“Well if that amount is a problem, my friend,” he said, “then you need all the business you can get!” I chuckled and agreed with his statement, biting my tongue to keep from calling him on the carpet about his statement. Yes, it’s true, but why point it out that my business is not where I’d like it to be?
I felt like he reached through the phone and slapped me. Why did this man, who clearly has more experience in business than I have, think he had the right to show me that my business wasn’t making six figures a year? The nerve!
Okay, you really want to know why I don’t want to get involved with his service? He just doesn’t “Get it!” Instead of wanting me to pay him to add value to his service, he should be paying me to provide his service – whatever it is – with value!
He’s like the folks at some of the major networking sites: He wants people to use his service and get value from it, but yet he doesn’t want to pay anyone to provide “applications” to create value within his network! Sort of like what Facebook has started to do with developers of such applications which enable you to send a gift, send an e-card, buy a drink, whatever. (For more information on THE NEXT DISRUPTORS, pick up and read the September issue of Business 2.0.)
I strive to build relationship capital in the Relationship Economy, and I didn’t want to tell him that I don’t think his philosophies and mine will mesh terribly well. In fact, they are diametrically opposed! I didn’t see any point in debating with this businessman about whose core beliefs were right, making the other’s wrong. I didn’t see any point in hurting his feelings, embarrassing, or insulting him.
How ’bout it?