If you’re looking for the quickest way to lose friends, clients and associates, miss your deadlines and break a few promises! It’s a tough economy and everyone is working harder than ever to build their business. That means we’re all depending on each other more so than in the past.
Even more frustrating for a consumer is feeling like you’re trapped in a Verizon, “Can you hear me now?” commercial. Think about a client who's waiting, but nobody is knocking on the door, responding to their email or calling their name. Their phone isn't ringing. That silent response puts any consumer on the defensive, automatically thinking the worse.
In my Hasselblad days we used to laugh at Swedish expressions that just didn’t translate. One of my favorites was “When the crib is empty the horses will bite!” I absolutely didn’t understand it the first time it was used, but the reference was to the feed crib being empty and horses nipping at each other because they’re hungry and food is scarce.
The reference was directed to the sales force, who at the time, were all complaining over the challenges with the economy, back orders and price increases. Product wasn’t being delivered as promised. They weren't getting any response from the home office. They were all on the front line taking the heat from photographers and retailers for broken promises.
Well, you’ve got exactly the same challenge with your clients and associates.
- Make it a point to exceed expectations and arrive early for appointments.
- Deliver products ahead of schedule.
- There are times when mistakes simply happen. Look for ways to make it up to clients before they realize it.
- Don't make excuses. Just take the responsibility and fix the challenge.
- Do everything you possibly can to put a smile on every client’s face by making the experience of working with you not only positive, but memorable.
When you miss the mark, and it’s happened at times to all of us, you create unnecessary stress for everybody and in the end it simply becomes more painful that it had to be. Your customer isn't always right, but every client deserves the very best service. You can dodge a lot of bullets if you just focus on exceeding expectations.
Illustration Credit: © bramgino - Fotolia.com