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4 Trust Building Habits

4 Trust Building Habits

Last week, I pondered the importance of trust and relationships. My company, Peak Business Valuation, began operations in August 2018. All of the relationships previously established under my prior company’s brand vanished overnight. I understood that relationships moving forward would now come from an initial cold call or LinkedIn message. With this daunting task in mind, I sought out a framework to build solid relationships with my target market.

To begin, I should preface that my target market is SBA Lenders at banks providing SBA business valuations. Peak Business Valuation works with banks to provide a third-party opinion on the value of a business for purpose of issuing an SBA 7(a) Loan. According to SBA SOP 50-10 5(J).IV(E), “an accurate business valuation is required because the change in ownership will result in new debt unrelated to business operations and potentially the creation of intangible assets”. Currently, SBA bank lenders work with vendors, whom they trust and have an established ongoing business relationship.

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My four principles for building trust and strengthening business relationships:

1. Be Open About Your Motives and Goals

The first thing I want to discuss is being open. During the last two months, I have spoken with dozens of SBA bank lenders about their roles. I also explained how Peak Business Valuation, business appraiser, could better serve them through SBA business valuations. Through these conversations, I learned the importance of silence and listening. Not only is it important to discuss my motive, but initiate a relationship. That second step proves to be more important. As such, listening is key.

Next, by better understanding their role at the bank, I am able to ask specific questions. However, I have noticed that each SBA bank lender is human. Because of this, I like to ask personal questions that fall outside their line of work. These questions, more likely than not, solidify the connection and have a better conversion rate than calls that stick strictly to business.

Being clear and upfront about your motives and goals after some casual conversation has proved to be worthwhile. At the end of the day, each person realizes that we are working to make a living. In each conversation, I make it a goal to seek out their goals prior to jumping into my goals and motivation. If I can help make that individual successful, I will do it. Ultimately, it will lead to a stronger and more trustworthy relationship. Those relationships eventually lead to work-related engagements.

How can you change the way you interact with those around you?

2. Be an Expert

The second trust-building habit is to be an expert. Yet again, I have learned that perception as an expert takes time and patience. One is viewed as an expert through work product and client testimonials. As a young company, Peak Business Valuation, business appraiser, prioritizes building trust first. If an SBA bank lender places trust in me, an opportunity may arise that enables me to show that Peak Business Valuation is indeed an expert at providing SBA business valuations.

You may be wondering, “how does being an expert build trust?”

It is not enough to have 5+ years of experience in finance and accounting. Not even being a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and Accredited Business Valuation (ABV) is “expert level”. The individuals in my life that I view as experts have a lot in common. However, there is one attribute that sets them apart. They serve first! Whether they express their service through free content, a phone call, or a product; they are all looking for a way to give back. Gary Vaynerchuk identified three characteristics to be an expert: “commitment to service, a desire to provide value, and a love for teaching”. It is through these characteristics I will judge myself before I claim the title “expert”.

3. Sincerely Interact with People

To understand this section, consider rereading the first bullet point. The points stated correspond with being sincere in one’s interaction with people. I want to focus on an area of sincere interaction that is sometimes overlooked. Firstly, be responsive. Responsiveness has always been a strength of mine.

Being responsive is a key quality that I make each SBA bank lender aware of.  Over the course of my career, it has become easy to accidentally neglect responses to an email or phone call. As such, our promise is to respond within 24 hours of initial contact.

What can you do to become more responsive?

4. Think in Terms of Win-Win

From the initial contact to the end of an engagement, recognize that trust is beneficial for both parties involved in the relationship.

Finally, business relationships are not a zero-sum game. For instance, I have identified ways to create a more advantageous win-win for the SBA bank lender. Ultimately, the SBA bank lender has a desire to close loans. The only way to make the loan process quicker is to deliver our engaged work product faster. The average turnaround time in my industry is around 10 business days. My company, Peak Business Valuation, guarantees a 4-5 business day turnaround. Shortening the delivery cycle will result in banks being able to close on a loan a week early in some cases. The results guarantee happiness for the lender and borrower. That is a win-win-win scenario.

The other elastic part of my business model is pricing. Designing a win-win scenario for pricing can be difficult. I have developed tiered pricing that is beneficial for everyone. By understanding your target market, you are more qualified to explore price sensitivity. For more information, refer to https://peakbusinessvaluation.com/services/.


In conclusion, my goal with this article is to document lessons learned on my journey. I hope that you can adopt and implement some of these principles. Lastly, I want to build firm relationships with SBA bank lenders. I want to show that quality service is my company’s policy. Peak Business Valuation, business appraiser, specializes in SBA business valuations. Get started by scheduling your free consultation below. 


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