I received a call recently from one of my client’s – let’s call him “Bruce”. Bruce owns a technical services firm. Bruce had just received a letter from one of his long-standing customers – and his customer wasn’t happy. Apparently, one of Bruce’s technicians had been sent out to fix the customer’s problem – and he did fix it very quickly. However, when the customer asked the technician what he'd done, the technician replied – “It’s pretty technical. You wouldn't understand.” The technician then packed up his tools and left. Needless to say, the customer didn't appreciate that response or as he put it, the technician’s “Technical Arrogance”.
In talking with Bruce, we discussed the need to clarify to his technicians – and to his entire staff – that simply fixing the customers’ technical problems isn't enough. That’s what they expect. They expect you to be able to fix the difficult problems quickly and effectively. That’s why they're willing to pay for your services. However, if we want to establish and maintain a strong relationship with our customers, we'd better be willing to go over and above just doing our job. We've got to provide them something extra – something of additional value. And that something of value can be our time and our willingness to educate them a bit.
When Bruce talked to his technician about the customer’s complaint, his technician replied, “Well he never would have understood what I did.” My comment to that is “Why not try to explain it anyway?” A true mark of a professional is the ability to communicate to others in terms they'll understand. That way, you'll not only solve their problems for them, but you'll help them understand what you did to solve it. You'll provide them closure, as well as build a stronger relationship with them. That’s the kind of relationship that leads to long-lasting business relationships.
Barbra Streisand is credited with the quote “Good enough never is.” I think that fits here.
Being good at what you do is expected. Go beyond what’s expected. Build a Relationship with your customers.
Copyright MMI - 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. Learn more about Liz on LinkedIn!