Becoming a Business Partner: Tip # 1 – Know your Client Inside and Out

October 29, 2009

by Sherry Engel

So how do we get to the point that we know the client so well that we become a part of their trusted team?

To become a trusted partner, we must think business, not learning.

  • How can we help our clients meet their business goals and objectives?
  • What challenges are they facing in the industry and/or marketplace?
  • What metrics are on their scorecard?

How do you get insight into this type of information? There are many ways to really get to know your client. Here are some quick tips!

  • Research the industry and marketplace – check out GlobalEDGE for industry profiles, or Hoovers for background on specific organizations
  • Talk to others that have a relationship with the client – possibly your HR business partner, individuals you know that may have worked with the client in the past, etc.
  • Understand cultural differences that may be a part of your client’s organization – GlobalEDGE also features information on cultural differences across the world.
  • Plan how to grow and deepen your relationship. Check out this book: “Relationship Economics” by David Nour for some great ideas!
  • Have interactive, consultative discussions ….more to come in next week’s blog entry!

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