Why Business Development is Like Dating – Valentine’s Blog

It’s often occurred to us that business development is a bit like dating.

There’s a certain courtship “ritual” which, after meetings, emails or pitches, can go either way.

So how do you ensure your new business relationship gets off to a flyer? Cream’s latest blog looks at the different types of client/buyer and how to handle them. Well it is Valentine’s Day after all !


1)      Chandler Bing – terrified of commitment. So, you’ve had a few business planning meetings, talked about working together and everything looks rosy. The problem is that commitment terrifies Mr Bing and when it comes to being tied down, he may run the other way.

Tip: A lot of work is needed up front to build a strong relationship and eventually he’ll let down his guard and trust you. Hang in there and you might just get the signature on the dotted line.

2)      Joey Tribiani – the womaniser. We’ve all been there, you think you’ve got a brilliant relationship, you’re meeting regularly and having a ball. Then, out of the blue, you find out they’ve been seeing someone else behind your back. Oh no…they’ve gone and appointed another agency! A true womaniser like Joey tends to have a wandering eye.

Tip: No matter how perfect you think the relationship is going, there can always be an unexpected blip. Chat regularly to ensure you’re both on the same page and don’t be too offended when they court others. Just like any relationship, be confident in what you have to offer but remember that you can’t please everyone.

3)      Alan Carr – Chatty Man. Good communication helps relationships to grow. But beware those who talk the talk and don’t walk the walk.  A client who makes all the right noises in meetings but then doesn’t do what you’ve agreed in between, can create a relationship destined for disaster.

Tip: Regular meetings, updates and most important clear action points is what’s needed here. Don’t be afraid be pushy in this scenario and get what you need. No relationship works if all the effort comes from one side.

4)      Sheldon Cooper – Mr Know It All. Feel like no matter what you do, there’s always something that just isn’t quite right? Just like Sheldon these business associates feel the need to put their mark on everything and may even take all the credit when things go swimmingly. You know the type!

Tip: Make sure you factor in additional time required when working to deadlines and remember not to take their interjections personally. Remember they’re coming from the right place, even if it feels suffocating at times.

5)      Del Boy – The Big Dreamer. ‘This time next year, we’ll be millionaires.’ Sound familiar? Just like Del Boy, the big dreamer says all the right things but whether they follow through is another thing all together.

Tip: limit your own expectations as well as trying to make theirs a bit more manageable! There’s nothing worse than not reaching an unachievable goal. We all love enthusiasm, but expectations set too high only create disappointment.

6)      Mr Darcy – Soulmates.   It might take a while to find your soul mate client but just like Bridget Jones or Elizabeth Bennett, the perfect business relationship can happen! Recognise the special ones and make sure you hang on to them. Don’t take them for granted – the best clients can sometimes get sidelined when the tricky ones we’ve referred to earlier are taking up all your time. Put some time aside to show them how much you appreciate them.


Happy Valentine’s.


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Chloe Staniforth

Account Manager
Despite growing up dreaming of becoming a maths teacher, Chloe swapped numbers for letters and is enjoying the variety of writing styles which come with a career in PR.

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