No matter what you call it--Your organization's reputation, relationships, goodwill, or brand, your organization's credibility with your customers is what will help your organization make it or lose it - especially when times are tough. Your organization's credibility has formed through the years as a result of the numerous professional, volunteer, and community interactions your team has had. Each interaction has been a grain of sand adding to and forming the entity that has become "your organization."
Now the big leadership question for you is:
- Just what type of entity have you and your team created over the years?
- Is it one your customers will return to time & again?
- Is it one that in good times and bad, your customers can count on to deliver its best every time?
- Would your customers say they like doing business with you because it's easy?
- Would they say your organization is solid?
- Or, would they say, when times are good, it's great doing business with you but when times are tough, your organization is inconsistent, your employees are scattered, and your organization's systems cause more headaches than solutions.
If you don't know the real answers to the questions above, it's time to ask your customers. By real answers I mean, the answers your customers will actually give you when asked one-on-one. I don't mean what you think they'll say. I mean what they will say - the good, the bad, and the ugly. If just the thought of asking those questions one-on-one with your customers causes your team members to panic, that should tell you something. Which of your customer service systems cause frustration for customers? What pricing or cancellation policies make no sense and actually drive your customers to your competitors? What types of unprofessional behaviors from your team have your customers dealt with in the past 12 months? What could your organization do to make it easy for your customers to want to and do business with you? What do you need to do better - now more than ever?
Now more than ever, business leaders need to reinforce the importance of customer relationships throughout their organizations. Now more than ever, business leaders need to help their employees understand that when money is tight, tensions are high, industries are shifting, and the future is unknown, trusting, solid, professional relationships will win more business than haphazard, gimmicky promotions. When the environment seems unstable, your customers look for that light in the storm to provide one source of stability; one source of consistency; one source of unshakable credibility. Now more than ever, it's time to solidify your organization's credibility, and viability, with your customers.
Now more than ever, it's time to do your job and strengthen your organization's credibility.
Copyright MMX - Liz Weber, CMC, CSP - Weber Business Services, LLC – www.WBSLLC.com +1.717.597.8890
Liz supports clients with strategic and succession planning, as well as leadership training and executive coaching.