Relationships are a huge part of our lives, and whether they’re personal or professional, they tend to require a little work. For entrepreneurs, a large part of the business is based on successful relationship building. Making different connections can help you expand your network and build relationships with others in your market. So, how do we maintain successful relationships in business?

We’ve all heard the phrase, “Communication is Key” when it comes to building and maintaining successful relationships. Think of marriage: when a married couple lacks communication, it’s not uncommon for problems to arise and misunderstandings to happen. Your professional relationships are similar; in that, communication plays a massive role in your ability to work well with one another. Many entrepreneurs partner with colleagues on business ventures, and while there are many benefits to doing so, when business partners cannot communicate their business can suffer.

Focusing on effective communication is a great way to be conscious of how you’re interacting with others. You may even be surprised at what you realize from paying attention to how you communicate. Effective communication is primarily based on seven concepts, commonly referred to as “The Seven C’s”:

  • Clarity

Clarity focuses on how you’re getting your message across when you’re communicating with another person. Avoid fuzzy language, and make sure your message has a clear point. 

  • Completeness

What makes a message complete? If you have a client that is looking for information regarding your business and services, for example, you want to provide them with all of the required details and necessary information. 

  • Conciseness

Hand and hand with clarity, conciseness focuses on delivering a clear and consistent message. Your delivery should be direct, keeping things “short and sweet.” “The message is usually short and precise, highlighting the main points in fewer words.”

  • Concreteness

If your message is highlighting factual information, it’s important to back it up with supporting info and research. Your statements should be concrete and accurate. 

  • Courtesy

One of the most critical parts of being an effective communicator is knowing how to be courteous to others. Throughout life, you will encounter various individuals that have different personality types and viewpoints. Be courteous of the receiver’s opinions and show mutual respect when facing differences. 

  • Correctness

Be aware of mistakes. In written forms of communication, mistakes happen. Grammatical and spelling errors can be easily looked over, and if you’re moving to quickly, you might miss them. Always take a few minutes to edit any forms of written communication and avoid missing errors. In a verbal sense, using correct terms and pronunciation is equally as important. 

  • Consider 

Entrepreneurs are usually all too familiar with giving presentations or speeches to large groups. When communicating with a larger group, consider your audience to deliver the best message. Things like age, professional or educational background can play a role in how your audience will hear your message, so be sure to consider these factors.

Being conscious of the way you interact with others is the first step in practicing effective communication. When you acknowledge where you can make improvements and adjustments, you’ll be able to get your message across easier. Additionally, practicing effective communication can help you address conflict, interact with diverse groups, and manage challenging business situations. From an entrepreneurial perspective, this will help you build and maintain strong relationships with others, and continue to grow on a professional and personal level.