Jan 2021|By Sam Bhanot
We are all working hard to get things done for our customers. Do not forget to communicate that to the client and other team members. This is as important, if not more, than doing the actual work.
This core value becomes absolutely critical for client-initiated questions or concerns. To those, we must respond within a few hours during normal business hours. Acknowledge their query first. If an answer or solution can be provided right then, great!! Go right ahead… and in the process pick up some valuable customer goodwill. If not, let them know your plan to get back to them including a specific timeframe; and then keep your promise. If for some reason you are running into delays and need more time to get back to them, let them know yourself including the new timeframe. Before they ask.
Unfortunately, I see many people respond to the above situations quite differently. And mind you, these are good, hardworking, honest people who do have the clients’ best intentions in mind (otherwise they should not be part of our team). When the client query comes to their attention, they immediately understand what is being asked and its importance to the client. And then they do absolutely the wrong thing – they get right down to work trying to get to a solution or answer. They send an email to a supplier or a colleague asking for some answers, they leave a voicemail looking for help, they ask the admin to set up a meeting with the engineers, or they set up “research time” two days later to go through the code/documentation…and all these tasks have inherent delays. Meanwhile, one week later, the client is still waiting and fuming – with nothing but eerie silence from our side. Often times, customer satisfaction takes a serious hit at that point, even with a well-researched answer. This does tremendous harm to the organization’s reputation over time and must be stopped.
Taking care of the customer by delivering the requested service is important, but it is only half the battle. Communicating with them is often as if not more important.