The Relationship Paradigm
has 6 elements

  • Communication
  • Connection
  • Commitment
  • Fun
  • Growth
  • Trust
In a Pivotal Business Relationship there are also three players; You, Me and Us


We can never not communicate.

Even when we are saying nothing there is still communication. Communication is much more than words, silence is communication, a look is communication, the lack of a look or looking away is communication.

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The meaning of any communication is the message that is received.

We may think we are saying something very clearly, but what is critical is what the other person is actually hearing or receiving.

Communication is about being able to express your feelings to each other, subtly or directly, without fear of being judged. It’s knowing that they will listen to you and, even if they don’t agree, will understand.

It is also about being able to talk through differences of opinion, knowing you may not be able to agree, but that the difference will be accepted and will not pollute the rest of your relationship.

Feeling listened to, fully heard and understood is key to good communication in a pivotal relationship.

Feeling Understood Exercise :

How well do you listen to your colleague?

Here’s something you might want to try when they are talking, maybe talking about something that’s bothering them, or wanting to discuss something important with you:

Stop what you are doing, put any electronic devices down, switch off sound notifications, and place it out of sight

Give them your full attention, concentrate on what they are saying rather than thinking about what you are going to say in response to what they’re saying.

Show you are listening by making eye contact, giving acknowledgement by nodding, saying yes, and recapping what they are saying to check you have heard them correctly.

Try not to offer solutions or ‘fix’ their problem.

If you practice really listening to your colleagues you will feel more understood and you can quickly discover the enjoyment of talking through things together.

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Connection is about big things and small things.

It’s about being in the same space, making time for conversations and sharing the same purpose.

It’s about making sure there are times in every week where you are there for each other and fully present.

Demands of the business will always get in the way, but you have to find ways around these and make time.

We all have habits and patterns of connecting in our pivotal relationships, some can make us feel really close, and others make us feel less connected.


Commitment involves you both being clear about what you want....

from life, for yourself, and from the business relationship.

You both need to be heading in the same direction because if that commitment is not there the pivotal relationship will falter.

A great pivotal relationship at work is the best thing on earth, but it is hard work and life gets in the way.

Great working relationships require time, effort and commitment.

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Fun is fundamental and hugely important...

in keeping a pivotal relationship growing and glowing.

As Peter Drucker said, there are only two reasons for being in work; to make money and to have fun.  If you are not achieving both, then do something different.



Growth is essential for individuals and business relationships.

A great business relationship needs two fulfilled individuals and an ‘us’ that is also fulfilled. Growth is needed to allow both people to flourish and cope with changes in the business, changes in working priorities and responsibilities, and changes triggered by outside circumstances.

A relationship cannot remain static or as it was when a pivotal relationship started.

And it will look very different years later as people gain more experience, grow older and mature, changing their views and desires. A relationship is a living thing that needs to be nourished and taken care of, without growth a relationship stagnates and a pivotal relationship will drift apart. .

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Trust is like a clear blue sky.

If trust in your working relationship is beginning to be doubted it is as if big grey storm clouds appear and make it hard to see. Reality becomes a dark place difficult to escape from, and it's easy to start doubting others, questioning motives, and doubting yourself.

Rebuilding trust requires absolute clarity over the direction you are both going in, total openness about what you are doing and why.


Your path to a great pivotal relationship starts here

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