We all want to offer good customer service.
But too often I see business owners go way too far.
So many entrepreneurs treat the client (or potential client) as being superior to them.
When they phone us we feel we have to drop everything we’re doing and answer them.
When they ask us to deliver work within a ridiculous timeframe we gulp and say “Yes of course.”
When they ask for fee reductions we quickly give in.
We provide multiple solutions and let them choose, instead of telling them the best way to go.
And when we’re in meetings with them we let them lead the agenda.
These are all big mistakes. Behaving this way is not customer service, it is subservience and weakness.
(Even though I know you have the best intentions by doing it – you simply want the client to be happy.)
Now of course, we have to service clients well and efficiently. And deliver an excellent result in a reasonable time period.
But letting them take control and take the dominant role in the relationship does damage to your business in two ways.
Once they sense they are the ’boss’ of the relationship they usually increase their demands of you. You slowly end up doing more for less, much quicker.
Their respect for you diminishes.
Remember this: What they really want is a trusted advisor who is their equal. Someone who clearly knows more about a particular area than they do, and so can counsel them wisely, saving or making them a fortune, or at least making their life much easier.
You don’t earn their respect by bowing down to them all the time.
You earn it by being excellent, sure of yourself, behaving like a true industry expert, being strong with them when they are wrong and leading them throughout your journey together so that they get an optimal result.
Yes you are warm and friendly. But you are also elite- behaving as an eminent expert, not a sycophantic slave in need of their money.
Be strong with them. Lead them. And treat yourself as a true industry paragon.
Believe me, it will be far more attractive to them. And far more lucrative for you.