Reflections on Building a Successful Business: The Importance of Authentic Relationships and Doing What You Love

After almost two years in business, I reflect on what it took to get here. A few significant factors have contributed to my success so far: doing my best work for people, building quality relationships, doing what I love, and consistency.For years, I’ve preached the importance of putting yourself out there and engaging in meaningful networking. That has involved pursuing my hobbies and the things I love, such as boating, joining local social clubs, volunteering at my kids’ schools, spending time at the baseball field, and serving on several boards of directors. For others, volunteering with local non-profits or staying active in networking groups like Rotary or the local Chamber is effective.While the intention is never to get work directly from some of these more social activities, the byproduct is building relationships. And as we all know, the more authentic relationships you have, the more people who know what you do, and the more clients will be referred to you because they see your quality work and character. When I set out independently, my goal was not to build a large business. Instead, I wanted to work with people I liked and trusted, help them get the word out about their excellent work, and maintain a quality work-life balance that allowed me to be there for my kids, who are now ages 10 and 13. I can volunteer at their schools, take them to their sports practices and games, and be an active part of their lives.Building relationships can take many forms, but the bottom line is this: do what you love, do good work for people, and build a vast network of quality relationships, and you will be successful in business.Remember that building a successful business takes time, effort, and dedication. You can achieve your version of success by doing what you love, delivering quality work, and nurturing authentic relationships. So keep pushing, stay focused, and enjoy the journey.