Surround your Business with Trusted Advisors
It’s no secret that building a trusted network of professionals is one of the keys to success in business. But how do you go about creating and maintaining those relationships? We recently talked about customer and business relationships with Patrick Novack, a Coastal Relationship Manager. In addition to forming relationships with customers and vendors, Patrick recommends that business owners have a network of people to help advise them. Here are some ways he suggests getting started:
- Identify what you need. Before selecting your team of advisors, determine what advisors and services your business requires. When you decide what type of advisors you need, set time aside to interview several professionals, check reviews on them and their business, and ask other business owners and family members for recommendations. Bonus points if you are reaching out to them through a referral! Ultimately, you want to choose professionals you feel comfortable with, and trust but also offer the products and services you need to succeed.
- Where should you start? Patrick says that a typical business network often includes an accountant, lawyer, investment advisor, and Banker. A network like this is not only helpful for making business decisions and strategies, but these contacts can provide referrals for other business needs you may have. An example he offered was if a business has excess liquidity, you may want to speak with Investment professionals. They can provide options on where to put capital for current plans and for the future.
- Get it in writing. Setting clear expectations and communicating clearly sets a strong foundation for a positive working relationship. Depending on the professional and service, once you find who you want to work with, ensure you have a contractual agreement.
- Re-evaluate your relationships annually. Because businesses grow and change, business owners should review their network annually to ensure they are still a good fit. It’s a good practice to review your relationships to ensure they meet all your needs – the products offered, customer service capabilities, etc. “Their business can change and grow just as much as yours,” Patrick said.
Now is a great time to sit down with your Banker and talk about your business and goals. Your banker can guide you through all financial aspects of your business and offer a wide network of people they can refer you to. If you want to read the full article with Patrick, click here: Business Planning Tips During an Uncertain Economy.