You’re probably too young to remember that old song… It had a beautiful melody and a sad, romantic, message about lost love.
But burning bridges in business is not romantic, and certainly doesn’t have a beautiful melody.
Perry Marshall once sent a message about a woman who “lurked” around his site for 3 years before finally jumping in to invest in his courses and materials. When she finally did, it was to the tune of about $8,000.
Had he brushed her off somewhere along the way, he would have burned the bridge between them, and she would have spent her money somewhere else.
But he didn’t do that. He kept her on the list, gave her full access to all the free advice he hands out,
Are you dropping people from your list because they don’t take action quickly?
Are you assuming that if they’re not interested now, they won’t be interested next week – or next year? Obviously, that’s a mistake, and a silly one. If you’re communicating via email, it costs you nothing to keep that prospect on your list.
What if you WANT to burn the bridge?
What about customers, clients, and prospects who are too demanding, ask you to commit illegal acts, or are simply unpleasant people? You actually want to burn your bridges with them. They’re not only time and energy thieves, they can be downright dangerous to you.
BUT… unless you do it carefully, that burning bridge can spread and engulf a whole lot of bridges that you’d rather stayed intact.
You have to choose your words carefully, so that when your message is forwarded to friends, pasted into a blog, or otherwise distributed to the world, you won’t need to go hide under a rock.
As much as you want to yell and tell the person that they’re an inconsiderate idiot, or a common crook, or an unpleasant, nasty human being, don’t do it.
Blame something about yourself for “breaking up” with this particular person.
Being a business person has it’s freedoms – but also its restraints. You need to keep close watch on your words and actions at all times, and never give the gossips a thing to talk about.
Bridge photo courtesy of Dreamstine
Woman with hand out courtesy of nenetus at FreeDigitalPhotos.net