How Not to Build A Relationship

Confidence – One of the Most Important Aspects of Negotiation
January 16, 2013
Leave Emotion Out
March 28, 2013

We are hearing alot these days about the importance of building relationships.  There have been numerous articles about it all across social media and many speakers are starting to specialize in it and talk about it as their main area of expertise.  With all this talk about relationship building there are still many people who don’t get it.  Here are a few examples of how not to build a relationship:

Hello Eldonna. FB suggested you as “people you may know” and what got my attention is how we have 3 mutual friends I know from my years as a Relationship Marketing professional or who emphasize health and wellness. I head up a development organization for Univera (#62 in DSA Top 100). As you’re considering your goals for 2013, is the timing right for you to look at your HEALTH and/or build another source of income? Please give me an update on what you are doing now and your interest in having a brief 5-7 minute conversation. If yes, please provide me with your contact information and some dates & times that is convenient for you. As you know, timing is everything in life. I look forward to your response. My email is xyz@pushingmyproduct dot com; , or call my cell @ 555-123-4567.

At least this person used my name but it was a total pitch.  When I mentioned that to him, he came back and pitched me further with heavy selling of his MLM product line and alot about weight loss etc.  If he would have taken the time to research me and not assume I needed to lose weight, he would have seen that I am not overweight by my photos and should have taken some time to get to know me instead of pitching me on his products.  Not an effective way to build a relationship.

Here’s another example:

Hi Eldonna, I just found out about a 90 Day Health and Fitness Challenge that I am promoting. My goal is to loose 15 lbs. I have lost 7 and I am on day 28. If you have a few moments, please check out my website and watch the short 7 minute video at cantbuildrelationshipforbeans dot com Thank you for your time!

This site was another MLM product.  I didn’t have a relationships with this person before and she admitted it was a cut and paste email that she was sending out to everyone.  One size does not fit all in relationship building. Not a good way to build relationship and get me interested in anything you have to offer.  Didn’t do anything to find out about me.  Nothing here interests me in supporting her in her goals because it sounds like a total product pitch.  Going to the website it is a total product pitch.

Finally the third example was a newsletter sent out that didn’t include my name but was a complete pitch for a skin care line.

It said “it was great to meet you at the networking event.”  ??? What networking event?  I didn’t even know who this was.  She must have gotten my email somehow and added me to her list.

The bottom line here is that people are sick of microwave marketing and want to build relationships with people rather than build big lists.  Of course building your list is important.  However, building relationships is moving up the list of being more important. We need to take the time to find out something about the people we are talking to and discover whether or not they are our right and perfect clients.

Eldonna Lewis Fernandez
Eldonna Lewis Fernandez
Veteran negotiation and contracts expert Eldonna Lewis-Fernandez, author of “Think Like a Negotiator,” has over 30 years of experience crafting killer deals both stateside and internationally, many in excess of $100 million. She’s currently the CEO of Dynamic Vision International — a specialized consulting and training firm that helps individuals hone negotiation skills — as well as a nationally regarded keynote speaker, session leader and panelist on the Art of Negotiation. Eldonna may be reached online at

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