Leading Blog


Relationships Matter

Relationships Matter

“At the center of every success,” writes Brian Church in Relationship Momentum, “you will find a pivotal relationship. Conversely, you can trace the cause of most failures to a relationship vacuum or breakdown.”

Relationship Momentum is a book about how to create momentum for moving your ideas (or your career) forward. Church begins by stressing that at the foundation of any success is relationships. It explains why seemingly less skilled or talented people can blow right on by their more gifted peers. Or why an inferior idea might dominate over your “better” idea. The resulting resentment and frustration tends to turn our focus “more inward and non-relational” and any relationship momentum is diminished.

“The tendency is to think that personal success and personal performance is a ‘self-thing,’ when, in fact, it is a ‘relationship thing.’” We need to be very intentional about our relationships.

Whether you are stuck, stagnant or haven’t started, Church offers and explains a formula – Rm = E3Vs (Relationship Momentum equals the product of Brand, Value, and Ambassador Equities times Strategic Velocity) – for gaining traction and building momentum for your ideas throughout the book. He explains why frequent course corrections kill momentum; why we need to stop starting over; why your ideas need to be packaged in a way that is easily transferable; why your ideas need ambassadors; and why organizations that are wrapped up in creating their own reality, that is to say, convinced of their own superiority, are of little value.

Some good advice on strategy and tactics:

Your strategic objective is always a single direction. It is a vector that points to where you want to end up. A tack or tactic will often veer off temporarily into another direction in order to catch a prevailing wind. For instance, your goal is to provide advice for a fee to potential investors. Veering off to obtain a master’s degree in financial planning is your tack. Though it may be a longer distance to travel, that tack is nonetheless the most efficient course.

The problem emerges when people don’t understand the difference between strategic objectives and short-term tactical responses. For example, they tack to the northeast, and as a result, increase their Velocity. They begin selling term-life insurance to pay for the added tuition costs, which picks up speed and turns into a pretty good business. But instead of tacking back toward their strategic end goal, they just continue on the same course. In other words, they interpret speed as success toward their objective when they are, in fact, only moving farther and farther off course.

One of my primary mistakes was measuring my current success simply by the speed of my project. I would get excited when things began to move quickly. However, I was like a person looking for a breeze and allowing it to take me wherever it would go.

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