Managing relationships you have with governing bodies is essential for your long term plans. If you don’t, you could be in deep water—literally. For instance, I’ve had an excellent relationship with the governing bodies of a certain city in Florida, where we have a wastewater treatment plant. (Basically, it's a self contained sewer treatment system for 137 mobile home sites.) All the human waste gets funneled here. Then the sewage is treated, chlorinated, and purified. The purified water is recycled back to the water table under the properties. Works great, right? It should!
A couple of times, though, this treatment system failed me. On one occasion, the sewage literally backed so bad that it sent raw sewage into traffic floating down a six-lane highway!
We were able to remediate that quickly and *avoid being cited by the department of health*. How? Because of our good relationship with the governing bodies in the city. If they had cited us, it might have shut down that treatment plant, forcing us to tap into the local sewage system. This would have been very expensive and exorbitant.
So suck up to governing officials by making their job as easy as possible.
- Always answer the phone
- Respond to them promptly
- Give them everything they need
Simply put, make their life easy.
A great tool for managing governing body relationships
If you’re going to record and organize all your interactions and communications with governing bodies (see below), do this with Evernote. Create an Evernote file to keep all your licensing documents (business licensing, health department licensing, etc.) and keep another Evernote file for your accounts (utilities, bank accounts, etc.). This way you can make sure you're legally aligned with the governing bodies.
Advice managing governing body relationships
1. First of all, establish some form of digital communication. This means alerting governing bodies about who you are, what you’re doing, and what your responsibilities are as a business. Because if something happens and you don’t quickly respond, you can get in major trouble.
2. Record and organize all your interactions and communications with governing bodies. Do this by creating an Evernote file to keep your licensing (business licensing, health department licensing, etc.) and another file to keep your accounts (utilities, bank accounts, etc.). This way you can make sure you're legally aligned with the governing bodies.
3. Try your best to make yourself as accommodating to the governing bodies as you can. The nicer you are to them and the easier you make their jobs. This is because, miles down the road, you’re going to need them to not cite you for a violation.