Two days ago, my client and I had reached a watershed. He and I recognised that we had completed one set of work and that to apply his learning, he needed to try out techniques for a month or so before continuing. So I took this opportunity to ask for feedback.
Brian Tracy, a business author, speaker and someone I deeply admire, who says things like,
“Move out of your comfort zone. You can only grow if you are willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable when you try something new.”
“It doesn’t matter where you are coming from. All that matters is where you are going.”
“I’ve found that luck is quite predictable. If you want more luck, take more chances. Be more active. Show up more often.”
As I said, Brian Tracy, http://www.briantracy.com in his audio book, “Customers For Life” (which is one of the audio books I listen to when taking my greyhounds for a walk), says that feedback is one of the foundations of a successful business. He says that a successful business is not about profit, it’s about satisfied customers. He goes on to say that you cannot assume you have made a successful sale until your customer buys from you twice. The first time, your customer is taking you on trust. The second time, they know your product does what you say it does. Therefore, in order to learn vital business intelligence, you must ask your customer and write down their reply:
- What are the most important things we do for you? What is it that we do for you that you value the very most?
- How can we serve you better? Is there anything we can do to improve our service to you next time?
- On a scale of 1 – 10, how would you rank our service to you?
- (and if lower than 10) What can we do to make that figure 10 for you?
This builds customer loyalty, reduces customer complaints and ensures repeat orders 90% of the time. So if you get a customer complaint, this is your opportunity to build a customer for life! Moreover, customers who don’t have any complaints are thinking of going somewhere else!
So when you hear a complaint, hear it out politely, even welcome the complaint. Nod, smile and just say, “Thank you for telling me that, for letting me know.” And powerfully, “Can you give me an example? Tell me more about that.” Then “I’m sorry that happened. Let’s do something about that. What would you like us to do?”
With every one of my clients, I do my best to ask for feedback. It demonstrates that I value them deeply and it also shows my confidence in their judgement as well as my confidence in myself and what I have to offer.
When I get comments from my clients such as……….
“I would have not been able to progress my career at the pace and to the level I wanted without your challenge and steer.”
“You have opened my mind to new ways of communicating which dramatically improved impact, first and lasting impressions. I have used many of your techniques in real situations which have resulted in positive and profitable outcomes.”
…….I feel I’ve made a positive difference to their lives which means more to me that anything else.
And as Brian Tracy says,
“Your company’s most valuable asset is how it is known to its customers.”