Carla Bobka, relationship person.
My life revolves around relationships, and there is little that means more to me. Not just family and friends, but business relationships, too. In fact, I have a knack for those.
With more than 15 years in professional relationship management, I’ve realized supporting those relationships is not intuitive to everyone. It is intuitive to me. The blogging platform is a way to pass along what I know, lessons learned and insight to those who might find it useful or are just curious. Relationships aren’t rocket science, but they do take attention. This is a spot for me to dump thoughts on of the skills I’ve learned and some of my instincts, making room for more to show up.
Typically I enter new business relationships to fix a long-standing problem. “Send Carla, see what she can do,” has developed over time. I fix things and set up a system so it stays fixed for a pretty long time. That builds trust, even when we start out in a very distrustful environment. When you make the customer successful, the customer will give you a chance to be successful, too.
Have a goal > Develop a strategy > Work the process > Measure the results.
At the moment I work as a consultant with several clients. Freesource Agency is a social media consulting firm. It was founded a year ago and I’m leading a video library project to help older Americans get comfortable using the web and social media. Wow, is it fun! I would have never guessed I would land in a brand spanking new industry with a role of establishing and growing a company– and all that goes with that.
At Over Coffee Cafe I am leading the Facebook Fan Page effort. Connecting with their fans to find out what ties us together, with the ultimate goal of increasing their visits to the store. We have made huge strides and now are testing our strategy to measure the progress. Stay tuned for an update.
One of the elements I find amazing is how culture develops. It was one of the items on my 30 Day List when I started with Freesource-what are we doing to design the company culture? Guess what-when we got pinched for time, and couldn’t devote attention to it, culture showed up anyway. At Over Coffee the culture was well developed, and not reflected in Facebook. That was an easy fix, and the engagement levels have proved it makes a difference.
Random Personal stuff:
Married: to Superman-seriously, read the Say Thanks post about the cookies and you will see what I mean.
Favorite Band: Steely Dan (esp. Deacon Blues)
Last meal: biscuits w/ sausage gravy, lots of pepper
Starter and Finale of the day: coffee (illy, not DD; black, since I was 3); vino
Greatest sport: football
Greatest game: golf, and Mexican Train Dominos
Grad School: Villanova Executive MBA, the hardest 21 months ever, and brought some of the best relationships ever. Money well spent.
Character trait that gets me in trouble: failure to state the obvious, ’cause its obvious.
Dream job: professional party giver, it’s genetic