Absolute Certainy

How to give your customers exactly what they wants

Deliver What Your Clients Want

There are three simple principles involved in providing certainty to your clients:

  1. Ask them what they want
  2. Commit to providing what they ask for
  3. Develop the systems to deliver what they want, when they want it

Ask your clients

There are several different methods you can use to find out what your clients want – surveys, focus groups and one-on-one discussions.

No matter which method you use there are four key questions you should ask your clients:

  1. What do you like about my business?
  2. What do other similar businesses do that you like?
  3. What do you find frustrating about my business?
  4. What do other similar businesses do that you find frustrating?

The answers to these questions will give you the opportunity to differentiate your business.  Addressing your client’s frustrations and reinforcing what they like will allow you to stand out from the crowd.

Commit to action

Once your clients have told you what you need to do differently, you need to commit to doing what needs to be done.  The best way to begin is to tell as many people as possible what you are going to do. Telling people what you are going to do will make you accountable.  So you should:

  • Tell your team
  • Tell your family
  • Tell your suppliers
  • Tell your advisers
  • And most importantly tell your clients

Of course you will also need to set aside the time and resources required to make it happen.

Develop new systems

“If you do what you have always done, you will get what you have always got.”

Improving your service so you can provide your clients with the certainty they want will require you to develop new or improved systems.

You may already have some form of procedures manual that describes the technical aspects of whatever it is your business does.  It’s great if you do.  In addition to those procedures you are likely to need:

  • Checklists to confirm what your client want and to help you get all the information required when your client places their order with you
  • A business process summary so that your client knows what is going to happen and when, and what their responsibilities are
  • A pricing system so that you can tell your client what the price will be before the job is started.
  • A job planning system so that you can determine when the job can be done and by whom
  • A workflow management system so that you can control and optimise the flow of work through your business and deliver on time

Many service businesses have problems in two key areas – pricing and workflow management.  We’ll look at these two areas in more detail.

 

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