What you need to do to deliver a stand-out “customer experience” isn’t all that easy to pin down when you’re a solopreneur delivering professional services – often either remotely or in external environments over which you have little control. There’s generally no decor, no music, no mood lighting, and no other sort of frills and fanfare to set the tone. So how do you make working with you a positive, memorable experience that your clients will want to repeat? How do you embrace the “Power of the Heart” as Chuck Wall calls mentions in his book Customer CEO? While you might not have all the resources that larger companies have at their fingertips, there are things you can do to harness the Power of the Heart when working with clients:
- Be cheerful and make clients feel wanted and appreciated.
- Communicate often so clients know that you care about their projects and that you’re making progress.
- Be responsive to questions and concerns.
- Be collaborative and demonstrate that you’re a partner vested in the success of their projects.
- If you make mistakes, admit to them, say “I’m sorry,” and find a way to make it right.
- If clients mess up don’t be accusatory. Diplomatically explain their errors and don’t use an accusatory tone. They most likely didn’t do it on purpose.
- Deliver what you promise.
- Deliver what you promise on time.
- Say “Please” and “Thank you” often and abundantly.
- When you don’t see eye-to-eye on some aspect of a project, listen to their point of view and take time to understand it before sharing your thoughts.
- Stay in tune with their needs and direct them to resources that can help them solve issues that aren’t in your area professionally.
- Embrace their uniqueness.
- Be nice – always!
As Wall mentions in Customer CEO, most clients want to love what you do for them. They’re investing time and dollars in your relationship. Why would they want to waste either? Give them quality, exceed their expectations, and give them every reason to like you and come back for more!
Your turn! How do you make the experience of doing business with you something special?
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