My first sales mentor used to rub his hands together in glee when we had a problem with one of our clients. “Any fool can do it when it’s going well but only a real star can do it when it’s not” he would say. He was right.
I’m not saying you should go out with the intention of pissing your clients off – far from it but when a problem occurs why not use it to your advantage. Try this 7 stage approach to dealing with client problems: –
- If it’s a major problem get on site, if it isn’t get on the phone.
- Apologise first then dive straight in and understand what the problem actually is.
- Even if it’s not your fault don’t get into the blame game.
- Come up with a plan to put it right and get the client’s buy-in for it.
- Fix the problem.
- When problems occur client satisfaction always outranks profit!
- When it’s all sorted head back to the client and see how this can be avoided in the future.
Problems can cost you time and money but they needn’t dent your reputation. In fact they can significantly enhance it building your personal brand and helping you stand out from your competitors as you go. As my friend Graham Davenport always says “Usually after I’ve sorted a problem out I end up coming away with another order”. I bet you do Big G.
So next time the phone rings with an irate punter on the other end rub your hands together with glee and get stuck in!
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