Are we talking about sales, marketing, facilities, or consumer sentiment? Well no, we are talking about our market friends.
Trader friends could be one of the single most important ingredients in our market - a great source of knowledge, a sounding board for ideas, a mood switcher, a distraction from worrying events, an opportunity to give (and take) and a source of warmth and comfort.
Personal engagement is seen everywhere in our market and financial profit comes from the way we deal with customers while emotional support comes from the traders around us. And when you think about it, the reverse can also apply. The emotional satisfaction from a “good” sale can be fantastic and the gems of wisdom from traders can be very influential in how we direct our business.
Our associations are sometimes organised - that morning coffee with fellow traders to discuss latest world issues (OK, often soccer or football scores) or perhaps a simple greeting and handshake before getting down to work. Talking with someone who has “been there, done that” can be very reassuring. And that doesn’t mean that you have to agree. Discussions that challenge us, and force us to see other points of view can be very important in reaching meaningful conclusions. You can discuss things with a market friend that you may not even discuss with family members.
Distracting conversations are one of my favourite types. When you are deep into serious business considerations, not sure which way to turn, and worried about financial issues, finding out that your neighbours pet dog went missing for two days, or that their new 75” TV is absolutely fantastic can be just the thought breaker you need.
Yes, friendships and personal engagement are very important to market life and just another reason why it is great to work at QVM. My Bank Manager on the other hand keeps on insisting there needs to be more.
By Greg Smith