What’s My Role?
“What’s my role?”
It’s a valid question that deserves an honest answer. First, let’s call a spade a spade. As a BRM, you are a pioneer in your organization. You are the first of your kind! It isn’t like a CEO or a CFO; those roles have been established forever. The CEO and CFO have examples and knowledge that span centuries. Your role as a BRM has only been around for about a decade and a half so, for all intents and purposes, most BRMs are in the discovery phase of their careers.
The business relationship manager isn’t a role you can master after passing an exam and getting the position. Anyone who has been at this role for any amount of time will tell you that it’s going to take some time and experience to grasp the role. It’s going to take determination, creative thinking and, let’s be honest, grit.
No two organizations are alike. Organizations are as different as individual people. As a BRM, you will come across leaders with finite thinking, huge egos, unrealistic expectations, unhealthy competition, and those who see you merely as an “order taker.” On the flip side, you may be fortunate enough and have a CEO who embraces an infinite-potential mindset, who puts people above profits, and who welcomes incorporating a BRM as a partner right off the bat.
But let’s be clear, finite-thinking leaders are conditioned to think that way. They don’t see the forest for the trees. Years of experience and a culture of profit-over-people has nurtured this way of conducting operations for quite a long time. This is where experience as a BRM becomes your guiding force. It’s the way in which you present your role to your organization that will make you an “order taker” or a partner. This is where time invested creates value.
Don’t get discouraged if you haven’t “changed the culture” in the first year of being a BRM. It takes time, strategy, and BRM capabilities to transform and bolster people into embodying a growth mindset. Just as a parent wouldn’t expect their toddler to read a book, don’t expect your organization’s leaders to transform overnight.
An infinite mindset doesn’t see the end of the road; it sees the potential ahead. BRMs must anticipate the long game and adjust accordingly. You’re going to get knocked down—and fail—but remember this:
FAIL is the…
When you fail, it helps you learn what not to do the next time. Every time you fail, you learn and grow. You will have to try multiple times, in multiple ways, to get limited ideas and old ways of organizational functioning out of the minds and hearts of people. But, if you keep at it diligently using the BRM capabilities, you will triumph.
How are BRMs guided through their experiences in their organization? Let’s preface this with the fact that it’s difficult for someone outside of your organization to tell you exactly what you should do to be a thriving BRM. Yes, there is an overall structure to the BRM capabilities. However, someone who works in healthcare will use different BRM tools than someone who works in finance.
As a BRM, you are in a unique position. You get to use the BRM capabilities in the best possible way to facilitate a partnership with people in your organization. Personal experiences, stories of triumphs, and tribulations always help other BRMs with both their struggles and achievements.
It’s the connection that matters. Are you connected to other BRMs? Have you reached out for guidance? Have you explored the benefits of the BRMP® and CBRM® credential programs? This is a role where being complacent will get you nowhere. Thriving as a BRM means getting uncomfortable, searching out answers, and finding your place as a strategic partner within your organization.
If you have questions, if you are struggling, or if you have found a great way of handling a tough situation, reach out to other BRMs through BRM Institute’s website. Every BRM was once right where you are! There are resources out there, so take a little time and connect with others who may have answers for you.
If you are motivated to dig deep and get solutions, register for BRMConnect 2022 in San Antonio, TX, October 4–5, and come connect with active and thriving BRMs.
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