How successfully do we demonstrate client love to our entire client base (including internal clients, our colleagues)? Hmm, I thought so.
In spite of our best efforts to deliver extraordinary outcomes to clients, some clients never are well-served. As a result, our business strategy – not just our customer acquisition strategy – must realistically accommodate the probability that clients will leave us.
Or, alternatively, we will elect to leave them to someone else, likely our competitor.
Clients leave us in spite of our continuously showing them what we think is client love.
Leaving customers is a strategy which flies in the face of customer acquisition and retention strategies. After all, in the best of all possible worlds, we acquire and retain absolutely every client we target. We never consider leaving clients to someone else. Instead, we fight to the business death to retain absolutely everyone. And that goal is the flaw in our customer acquisition and retention strategies.
You see, some clients are not well-suited for our professional skill sets. Or, our product and service offerings underserve their long-term needs. As a result, rate of customer retention, as well as customer churn, are clue cards to how vulnerable our products and services are to client defection. Realistically, we are not able to best serve customers, because the products and services we represent are not best-in-class. Because we cannot love them the way they need to be loved, clients leave us.
Then again, other clients play games with us, in spite of world-class products and services. You and I both have experiences with clients like these. In spite our most diligent, highly-skilled efforts to show them client love, these clients love jacking us around all over the place. When the client end-game is creating continuous professional discomfort and chaos, ask yourself: how well are they serving their own clients? If they cannot or will not love us, then we leave clients.
Showing client love is a gift we give to clients, and they, in turn, give to us.
Finally, once we take the time to align our core competencies with discovering the types of clients we are best able to serve, client love becomes a daily honor. Our client base is full of A-List customers best-suited to benefit from our own, and our colleagues, core competencies. Those core competencies include those oh, so powerful, collaborative soft skills.
Achieving this goal not only involves understanding that repeat business is not the best barometer for whether or not we are doing business with the right clients to sustain our organization. In addition, achieving this goal involves professional self-discovery, including retooling and recalibrating skill sets to continuosly deliver better and better enduring client outcomes.
Think about it. Wouldn’t it be delightful to look forward to delivering client love each day to a client base that shows you love in return?
Take the next steps towards better client match-making.
Babette Ten Haken, Founder & President of One Millimeter Mindset™ serves organizations as a corporate catalyst and innovative speaker, strategist, coach and storyteller. Babette’s One Millimeter Mindset™ Workshops and Speaking programs leverage collaboration to catalyze professional innovation, workforce engagement and customer retention, especially in challenging Industrial Internet of Things environments. Babette’s playbook of IIoT team collaboration hacks, Do YOU Mean Business? is available on Amazon. She is a member of SME, ASQ, SHRM and the National Speakers Association. Image source: Fotolia