Building Contractor-Client Relationships is Good Business

When we look back on the relationships Leon Williams Contractors has built throughout the years as one of East Tennessee’s successful commercial construction companies, we recognize that a key to our success is the synergy we establish with our clients. This relationship goes beyond the worksite. It’s about the way we listen and really hone in on what the client expects and demands of their contractor.

As a result, we’d like to give some reasons and tips on building a solid contractor-client relationship.

  1. The most fundamental characteristic of a strong relationship is trust in the other party and commitment to the relationship. Trust and commitment create a relationship in which all parties strive to achieve common goals, resolve conflicts, and share access to resources, information, and opportunities.
  2. In establishing a business relationship, each party needs to understand what motivates the other party and why it is important. An understanding of a particular company’s motivators in the business relationship will help in reaching an understanding that will be amicable to both parties.
  3. In addition to understanding what is important to the other party, finding goals and objectives that you have in common will provide opportunities for the relationship to grow and prosper.
  4. Each party can demonstrate its commitment to maintaining and strengthening the relationship by enhancing cooperation between the parties, providing opportunities and benefits that are better than those available from other sources, maintaining corporate values that are compatible with those of the other party, providing honest performance feedback (especially the negative) to the other party so they can take appropriate action quickly, sharing information that will enhance the other party’s market knowledge and upholding the implicit and explicit promises made.
  5. And finally, here are six other tips that can help build a successful business relationship:
  • Structure the relationship in a way that maximizes the chance of a successful win-win partnership.
  • Ensure that there is a clear understanding of the goals and motivations of all parties so they can be aligned to the maximum extent possible.
  • Ensure that all parties work to create a cooperative atmosphere. This is critical in the early stages of the relationship to get it off to a good start.
  • Develop a shared ability to find mutually beneficial solutions for achieving goals.
  • Openly discuss differences, such as, cultural, structural, financial, contractual, programmatic, political, etc., to provide insight into each other’s motivations and to develop mutual understandings.
  • All parties need to plan execute, and deliver on their respective responsibilities in order to achieve the individual and shared goals and objectives.

So, now you know a lot more about the philosophy we enter into with every client. Once both parties establish a template for communication and organization, their progress toward a common goal takes on a life of its own, which can be hugely beneficial. The customer gets the clear information that he needs to reduce downtime and keep the building process moving efficiently. The contractor becomes familiar with the client’s preferences, which eventually minimizes the preparation overhead. This type of relationship, built on loyalty, fairness and open communication will produce and amplify fantastic results over time. This in turn positively impacts the client’s bottom line with reduced risks. How can you beat that?


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