Ask Fred > Career/Work > How do you develop mutual relationships?

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Dear Fred

May I ask if you will elaborate on how to develop mutual beneficial relationships/ Even within our home church, it appears difficult to develop meaningful relationships. Your "Four levels of friendship" may be a clue. God bless.

Fred's Response

It does happen occasionally that a member of your network will become close friend. A network is a utility for everyone and friendship a special relationship with a very few. I found it is very helpful to ask someone out for lunch. It does not obligate either one but gives a chance to explore. I would be very slow to ask in my network to make contributions to causes I am involved in. Freedom of relationship is very necessary to the health of relationships. A few of my best friends started out as acquaintances and did not develop into friends until they learned I was not going to use them or ask them for anything. Don’t expect deep friendships to happen quickly. They are generally the result of a very slow growth. Don’t be afraid to make the first move in trying to define the potential of a relationship. It is better to test a relationship in short meetings rather than trips together before you have some assurance of compatibility.