Ep. 21 - Grow Profitable Relationships by Increasing Your Relationship Intelligence

To live The Extraordinary Life as a Lifestyle Entrepreneur you need a high level of Relationship Intelligence. Today during The Extraordinary Life LIVE Show we discussed this topic, answered questions from participants and shared proven strategies to improve your Relationship Intelligence Score and to help you accelerate your progress in achieving your goals and increasing the value of your relationship assets.

Relationship Intelligence by Jim Cathcart

by Jim Cathcart

Relationship Intelligence…is something that is sorely needed in this world. Here is the premise: Intelligence takes many forms. We’ve all been familiar with Intelligence Quotient, IQ, and in recent years such concepts as Emotional Intelligence and Social Intelligence have been popularized by Daniel Goleman among others.

We’ve stopped asking the dysfunctional question “How Smart Are You?” and begun to ask the more useful question, “How Are You Smart?” There are multiple “smarts” as Howard Gardner, Robert Sternberg and Thomas Armstrong have shown us in their books: Frames of Mind, The Triarchic Mindand Seven Kinds of Smart, plus their subsequent works. We now accept such concepts as: Intellectual Bandwidth, Physical Intelligence, Interpersonal Intelligence, Musical Intelligence, and more.

I’ve found, in my work with over 3,000 audiences over the past 40 years of teaching, consulting and lecturing, that there is also such a thing as “Relationship Intelligence®”. This is the capacity for understanding and operating successfully within the context of a multitude of human relationships. Individuals with a high Relationship Intelligence (RI) have much greater success in all types of dealings because they see beyond the momentary human interactions to the desired outcomes of the relationships. This is not just “people skills”, it is understanding human interaction within the context of continuing communication and commerce.

It is, as I say in my works on Relationship Selling, seeing Relationships as ASSETS and managing them accordingly.

The business community has come to embrace this concept more and more each year. One tool that has helped in this respect is CRM software. Customer Relationship Management systems have become so commonplace that an entire subculture has grown up around them. They now have international conventions strictly for the exploration of concepts and practices that establish, expand and sustain relationships over time.

What used to be simply a Rolodex of information, or a “data base” has now become a complex system among systems for keeping people connected. We’ve advanced into understanding and anticipating people’s needs and interests so that it is today virtually a science.

Here is The RI Formula (c): Relationship Intelligence equals Awareness Factor times Communication Skill over Desired Outcome.

RI = AF x CS / DO

The “Awareness Factor” consists of reading people and reading situations, in other words: Emotional Awareness and Context Awareness plus Self Awareness.

AF = EA + CA + SA

“Communication Skill” as used here consists of self presentation (self expression) and adaptability quotient. Adaptability Quotient measures one’s capacity for adapting to differences in people and changes in circumstances. CS = SP + AQ.
All of this is meaningless until you factor in the Desired Outcome.

A relationship with no desired outcome is not a relationship at all. It is simply a momentary exchange between people. Add a desired outcome; such as a business agreement and suddenly the expectations and requirements on both parties reach a much higher level.

For example: when two people make eye contact in a hotel lobby (in the USA) it is natural for them to smile, say “hello” or acknowledge each other in some way. That is not a relationship. Assuming they ride together on the elevator and exchange comments on the weather, they are still simply in “transaction mode” re: each other. But let’s assume that they soon discover that they are both headed for a boardroom wherein they will be introduced to each other and engaged in a discussion of a new business agreement, then a relationship develops.

Once they make this discovery their dialogue will take on a new dimension. They will become significantly more interested in each other. They will listen more carefully, interact more intentionally and take the entire experience more seriously. This is because they are now “invested” in the relationship. Meaning, if it goes well they stand to gain something and if not they stand to lose something.

In a business scenario this usually revolves around money and in a social scenario it revolves around feelings.

The more Relationship Intelligent each party is the more likely the relationships will be successful. If one is Emotionally Aware, meaning they understand feelings and the factors that affect feelings, then they’ll tend to be more sensitive to others and better at tact, diplomacy, persuasion, etc.

If they are Context Aware then they will understand that the situation is part of the relationship. Dealing with a CEO is not the same as dealing with a receptionist. Dealing with an urgent situation is not the same as dealing with a routine one. And so on.
To be Self Aware means to know how you come across to others and to understand what is going on within oneself. If you don’t know you, then chances are that you don’t understand others very well either. It is vital to “know thyself” as Socrates told us. This leads to self acceptance and self improvement.

Assuming a high Awareness Factor, the next category is Communication Skill. Just knowing is not enough, people must also be able to USE their knowledge to achieve an outcome. Communication Skill is Self Presentation, the ability to effectively express one’s ideas and listen well to responses, plus Adaptability Quotient. AQ is the combination of knowing how to communicate differently with different people and knowing how to adapt to changing situations. One might be great at getting along with people of all types but unable to cope with change and consequently they’d be handicapped in that relationship. Likewise the reverse, we can be good at adapting to change but inflexible in dealing with people and encounter many obstacles to success.

All of these are learn-able skills. You can learn to notice more and thereby increase your awareness. You can learn to listen well and communicate clearly. You can learn to read people and know how to customize your responses to the way each person would best receive your communication. Also you can learn to cope with and adapt to change.

What Relationship Intelligence does, is, for the first time, it puts all of these elements into context. It shows how they interact and combine in ways that will achieve the Desired Outcome.

The organizing factor here is the Desired Outcome. One simple way to make your relationships more productive today is simply to restate and agree upon the Desired Outcome at the beginning of each dealing. Just say, “To put today’s discussion in context let’s review what we are hoping to achieve through our dealings.” Then as each person states and clarifies their hopes and goals, you increase the focus and eliminate much of the irrelevant discussion.

Extraordinary Lifestyle Entrepreneur Challenge (7 of 8)

Running out of time to do what you want to do? Feeling close to burning out? Want to learn how to grow your business while maintaining a healthy work/life balance? Watch this video to learn the secret strategies of the super efficient, effective and massively successful lifestyle entrepreneurs.

Want to join the remaining sessions of the challenge? Click here!

Extraordinary Lifestyle Entrepreneur Challenge (8 of 8)

Jim Cathcart, a best-selling author and one of the top award winning motivational speakers in the U.S., and David Bush, Extraordinary Results Coach, share simple tips to help you take your life and your business to an extraordinary level of success and significance.

In this video you will...

- Learn the secret to overcoming complacency
- Discover Self-motivation tactics to get and stay motivated to work outside your comfort zone
- Uncover why you may be doing less and working more
- Understand how to overcome the mental barriers you've created to succeed at the highest level

Want to join the remaining sessions of the challenge? Click here!

Extraordinary Lifestyle Entrepreneur Challenge (6 of 8)

Want to learn how to increase referrals and build an extraordinary team of referral partners? Watch this video wof Jim Cathcart and David Bush and learn the secrets to building an annuity stream of referrals and the steps to secure profitable referral partnerships to grow your business opportunities without cold calling, advertising or investing lots of time in meaningless networking or social media browsing.

Want to join the remaining sessions of the challenge? Click here!

Extraordinary Lifestyle Entrepreneur Challenge (5 of 8)

In week 5 of our Extraordinary Lifestyle Entrepreneur Challenge we discussed strategies of Self-Motivation and how to create the success and life your want to create. Learn how to go beyond desire and dreams to get into action!

Want to join the remaining sessions of the challenge? Click here!


Extraordinary Lifestyle Entrepreneur Challenge (4 of 8)

During week 4 of the Extraordinary Lifestyle Entrepreneur Challenge we discuss Relationship Selling (Part 2). Jim Cathcart and David Bush share what activities to measure to improve your skills, strategies for building Contacts and Conversations and they review the 8 competencies of Relationship Selling to help you master each of them.

Want to join the remaining sessions of the challenge? Click here!

Extraordinary Lifestyle Entrepreneur Challenge (3 of 8)

In Week 3 of the Extraordinary Lifestyle Entrepreneur Challenge our topic was Relationship Selling. Jim Cathcart share the 8 core competencies of Relationship Selling and simple strategies to build meaning relationships with prospective clients/customers and showed us how to grow our business through quality relationship building. 

Want to join the remaining sessions of the challenge? Click here!

Marketing to Local Business Owners

by Motivation Expert Jim Cathcart

Pexels-photo-327538Business to Business, B to B, is well known and understood. So is B to C; business to customer. But what about B to N?

Business to Neighbors is often overlooked as a vital part of your marketing mix.

Within a few blocks radius of most urban and suburban businesses there are many other entities who share this geographic space with you. There are offices, service stations, coffee shops, convenience stores, quick service restaurants, grocery stores, repair shops, and retailers of all types. Among the neighboring offices there are law firms, accountants, technology consultants, marketing firms, hair salons, doctors offices and so much more. And every one of these people (including their employees and customers) drive right past you each week.

How many of them really know you exist? I mean, they are aware of your presence and they understand generally what you do, how many? How many of them do business with you and refer others to you? I see an opportunity, how about you?

Since they are within easy walking distance from your door, even on a bad weather day, you could reach them with no expense and little effort. Have you done so?

Here’s a thought: How about having someone simply walk the neighborhood and make a list of all the businesses within 2 blocks radius of your home base? List them all by business name and address. In office buildings take a photo of the building’s directory too. To make this project easy you might hire someone articulate, nicely dressed and polite to simply drop by each of the locations and exchange one of your business cards for one of theirs. Have them say, “We are based right here in the neighborhood and just wanted to say Hello and let you know that we are your neighbor. If we can ever be of help to you please let us know. Here’s our card. May I have one of yours?” Or, if you have a free-offer flyer or discount coupon or some other type of inexpensive ‘gift’ you can leave, that’s even better.

When you accumulate all the cards and notes of your neighboring businesses; start a Contacts List titled “Business Neighbors” and fill in what information you have as a beginning, with plans to expand each contact record over time. There will be turnover and some businesses will leave but your list can have many valuable future uses. It can be useful for business and even in the event of a local emergency should you need to reach out to others.

As you flesh out each contact record be sure to note the name of the owner or manager of the business and their main phone number and web address. Get their email too when you can and, of course, note their street address. In the Notes section try to describe what they do. If you don’t know; well, that’s your homework. Sooner or later, find out what they do. Set a goal to fill out 3 or more of their contact records each week till you are finished. Don’t turn this into ‘work’, just keep it in front of you until you have a really good Business Neighbors list.

Once your list is somewhat complete with just the basic information on each one, develop a marketing plan. Set the following goals:

  • Learn the name of the owner or manager of each business. 
  • Understand what they do as a business. Who do they serve and how?
  • Give them some information to help them understand who you serve and how. (Once they understand who your customers would be, then they can become a good referral source for you. It’s free prospecting!)
  • Find a way to host or encourage an event that will bring all of the neighbors together. Help sponsor a ‘mixer’ or host a reception, or hold a demonstration of what you do, or invite them to a special event. Keep it low key and inexpensive and easy to attend, no planning on their part.
  • Look for ways to refer business to them. Pay it forward. Give them reasons to appreciate you and to become curious about how they can help you too.

You will be amazed at how much business is right in your own side or back yard. Some of the people you know really well probably have offices or relatives who work there and you never knew it. Many of your customers do business with you Business Neighbors. Some of your former customers still come to the area to do business with others. Give them a reason to visit you again too.

Be a Good Neighbor…it’s truly profitable.

Jim Cathcart, CSP, CPAE, Sales & Marketing Hall of Fame