5 tips for healthy client relationships
Building good relationships with clients is part-and-parcel of business success. Customer loyalty from those who were satisfied with a good service in the past is cheaper and less time-consuming than forever having to seek out new recruitment leads. And these regular clients should never be taken for granted. They certainly represent a solid foundation on which to build, and by making sure to continue to recognise the value of the customers you already have, they are likely to recommend your service to others. Your good name ripples out.
Here are some ways to cultivate healthy client relationships.
Ensure a company-wide approach
Good customer service is not the responsibility of only one department. It is the bread and butter of any successful business, practised by everyone and evident in the manner of response to every single approach made by a client to your company. It is in how long someone is kept waiting on the phone, the length of time before an email is handled efficiently, how a customer is dealt with the moment they walk through the door. Being treated with respect is remembered especially when elsewhere people might have been treated poorly. It keeps clients coming back.
Developing relationships is a balance of give and take. By being focused from the start on what a client requires, and enabling them to understand your own role in satisfying their need, you can ensure you always deliver an excellent service that is appreciated.
Do not be afraid to find out what you are doing well, and what you are doing wrong. Asking your client how they felt about the service they received indicates your willingness to do right by them. Learning of any faults is an opportunity for you to correct and improve your relationship not only with this particular customer but also with all your customers.
It can be tempting to try and prove that nothing is too much trouble in serving your regular clients to ensure their loyalty. Ironically, this can have a
detrimental impact on the quality of your relationship. Businesses have been known to spread themselves too thin so that their level of service and reputation suffer. Be prepared to set limits and say ‘No’ while saying ‘Yes’ to what you know you can do well.
Stay open to opportunity
Sometimes it won’t be enough to simply respond to a client’s specific vocalised need or requirement. Through having developed a good business relationship, you could well see an opportunity to help them out in a way that had never crossed their mind. Tell them your idea. It shows them your company has their interests at heart, and will also be something they will be unlikely to forget when they mention your business to others.
Aiming to build customer loyalty should be an intrinsic part of your company practise. Responding well to client needs and requirements should become second nature. Such a policy can help a business flourish.