They aren’t that bad…

They were rooting for Cal.

We were rooting for USC.

Fierce rivals we may have been, but it was still friendly competition.

The end result wasn’t what mattered. We were all there, supporting our team, purely loving the game and the sense of community in the stands.

Just like a football team has a rival, you may have a “rival” or two in business. We are not unique in what we do. Sure, we all have our own processes, systems, programs, methods, but we aren’t alone in our profession.

It takes me back to the days of my printing company, Slater Graphics. For the last decade of my time there, I shared an amazing collaborative relationship with a great friend and business associate. We shared an office, built a team together and supported one another in our respective businesses.

We openly talked about what would happen if we ended up vying for the same account, which was very realistic. We knew that our priority would always be the friendship and we would support each other no matter the scenario. We were both working parents and we got the day-to-day struggles that came along with running a household and running a business. There was mutual respect.

As a business and executive coach today, I enjoy many close relationships with other coaches. I don’t see it as a rivalry or competition. I see alliances. I see a group of people who want to help others reach new levels in their careers and businesses. I’m happy to be a part of that.

I’ve learned from my colleagues, as I know they have learned from me. Whether you’re an entrepreneur or leading a corporate team, I encourage you to create alliances with your “competition.” I encourage you to work together, toward the common goal.

Two heads are better than one is not just a saying. It’s absolutely true.

Share with me your stories on creating strong relationships and alliances with your colleagues and the difference it made in your life.

Feel free to reach out anytime to support@slatersuccesscoaching.com to continue the conversation.

Why you should go…to that holiday party

Holiday parties on your calendar? Not feeling it. Would you rather go home after work, take off those heels, grab a book to read and head to bed? Hey, I feel you. But getting out there at this time of year is not just about the holiday party. It is a way to network with ease and joy and make true connections that will help your business, your career and your life. Read on.

And, it’s about FUN!

All year we work with our clients and our mentors and don’t get to spend as much quality time with them as we wish. I have so many clients, team members and colleagues that I just want to grab for a coffee on a Saturday and finish that conversation about their kids. Or take to my dance class with me to help them de-stress or invite them over for dinner so I can meet their family and introduce them to mine.

I have a genuine interest in people and their lives. Whether I was running my printing company, working with clients coaching or facilitating, I am a people person and I enjoy learning about others. It’s why I became a business coach. And any chance I get to spend a little extra time with my network is special.

Business relationships are great, but personal relationships and connections is what keeps it all together.

This is the time of year to get out there, mingle, have a glass of champagne or whatever your fancy and just talk. It’s not as stressful as a networking event where you feel like the focus has to be on business. Focus on life.

A friend and business colleague was just sharing with me some medical issues her mom is having and we chatted about it because my mom has had some, as well. Our moms are the same age… in their 80’s. Funny thing is, she needed to make some arrangements, needed a specialist and rehabilitation plans and who came to her rescue, someone from her networking group. They had a connection to a great doctor and she is in good hands.  

At holiday parties, if business talk happens to enter the conversation, fantastic. When you have a chance to just catch up over a glass of eggnog and cheer –  many wonderful business opportunities and expansions happen. Allow yourself to enjoy the art of networking. It doesn’t have to feel awkward or yucky. When it happens organically and you realize you can help someone solve a pain point they are facing in their business or vice versa, you find someone that can help you, it reiterates why networking is the best way to build your business.

With just a few weeks left in the year, make the most of it. Yes, it is a busy time of year, identify a few parties that you will be able to connect and reconnect with a bunch of people and say YES!  I have one tonight in my calendar and I am excited.   

Have a great networking story? I’d love to hear it. Share with me on the SSC Facebook or LinkedIn page.