Relationship management fundamentals

In the VFQ book, Understanding Your Customer, it states that customer-focused companies know how to value and listen to those who work on the frontline, dealing with customers (pg. 24). This is true whether you’re building new products and services that impact a customer, or if you’re in direct contact delivering a service day-to-day. There are many aspects to achieving successful relationships but there are five fundamental principles that can help you build a relationship with a customer:

  1. Person: understanding the person and their role
  2. Purpose: defining the purpose of the relationship
  3. Knowledge: knowing about their business, company, need or challenge
  4. Investment: allocating time, talent needed, treasure (resources) required
  5. Outcomes: measuring success and results


Think about defining these five principles for at least 3 of your customers or a stakeholder relationship. Share your output with others in your team to compare notes and initiate a dialogue on how things might be improved.

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