So when times are tough - and the engagement of these groups becomes even more critical to your bottom line - grasp the opportunity to develop a model to maintain the consistency of your relationship-building strategies.

- Be someone they enjoy working with. This is the time to tune up your best attitude and realize that we need to continue to be flexible. One-size does not fit all and we need to flex our own styles as we work with our clients and internal "clients" and colleagues.

- Stay in touch with them via their preferred method of communication. Figure out a time log that works and reach out to them with ideas, interests and just to "stay in touch."

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