TechInAfrica – In this modern world where startups are constantly emerging and tackling persisting issues with their innovative takes, ideas are the key towards shaping a more sustainable, technology-based future in multiple layers of society. However, it doesn’t mean that ideas play the only role in growing one’s business. Relationships, on the other hand, play another significant part which is still often overlooked by business models and entrepreneurs. This common misconception, albeit simple, could be of substantial factor towards future businesses.
To thrive in the market, not only your idea matters—that’s why they call it ‘million-dollar idea’—but also your team and your connection. Not only beneficial for the business, the external contributing players can also reap benefits from well-nurtured relationships. To this extent, Martin Zwilling via Inc. has compiled five methods to further ensure the growth of your businesses. Here they are:
Keep relationships a top priority
Okay, when you’re the CEO of an emerging, seed-stage startup, chances are you’ll be too busy figuring out the technical details of your company that you’ll have little to no time to find and nurture potentially beneficial relationships.
Or sometimes, people are convinced that they don’t even need connections that much because they’ll figure everything out in time; they’ll answer all their respective issues and no one can help. To move a business to its next level, its foundation must not only be built based on sole ideas alone, but also on connections.
Most people think Mark Zuckerberg built Facebook all by himself. In fact, he had four development co-founders, built a relationship with Peter Thiel, a top VC who invested early, and enticed Sheryl Sandberg to fill the COO role he sorely needed.
Get the bigger picture? An early relationship investment goes a long way.
Exhibit curiosity in your relationships
What does this exactly mean? Learn from other people; use each other’s curiosity as a basis for your relationships so that they will shape into a win-win connection. Continue constantly teaching and learning with each other and grow together.
In return, this could potentially bring continuous innovation and early access to new markets. Helping others helps you to get into a new framework of mind, effectively boosting your overall business model and your own personal growth.
Maintain connections with key customers
With the social media playing a large part on our daily lives, it’s now easier than ever to connect and keep in touch with customers. In hearing their aspirations towards the emerging market your company is in, new concepts and insights will be incubated—and the customers are more than likely to be content by the fact that they’re actually being listened to.
Additionally, smart business leaders look forward to talking with their competitors—not to steal ideas, but to learn more about the industry and potential win-win opportunities.
Invest your time towards non-business scenarios
In investing your passion towards non-business scenarios such as social and environmental issues (or any world issues, for that matter), you will attract leaders and make connections with people of the different scene. Whilst not exactly intersecting with your current business models, the relationships nurtured will be instrumental in adding long-term value to your business.
Seek out alliances with other businesses
Sure, it would be awesome if your business can flourish on its own without any types of collaboration between the players in the market—but there has been very few who succeeded this way, if not with a grain of luck. In this digital society, collaboration is often regarded more important than competition.
Business leaders with wide relationships are able to more quickly find and close on alliances to fill gaps in their product line, increase distribution, and reduce costs through common components.