You Shoot Yourself in the Foot, When You Piss Off Potential Customers

You Shoot Yourself in the Foot, When You Piss Off Potential Customers

The old religious sentiment, “Do onto others, as you would have them do unto you,” rings true across time and across disciplines. It certainly applies as a good business philosophy. Unfortunately it’s become an all too common business practice to take customers or potential customers for granted.

It’s very difficult to make a true and loyal customer, but it’s very easy to lose a customer for life.

It takes some good business common-sense and common courtesy to make sure that your customers are happy, engaged and thrilled to give you their business.

  • Start by being polite and respectful – whether in person or over the phone
  • Speak positively about your business and their business – don’t complain, your problems are not their problems
  • Listen to your customer with interest – don’t fake it
  • Keep your appointments and don’t be late – your customers time is valuable too
  • Offer solutions, not just roadblocks
  • Don’t say No! (unless it’s unreasonable) – rather say, “How can I make this happen.”
  • Apologize when it’s really your fault – be accountable
  • Compliment your customer – but be sincere
  • Become the type of professional that people want to work with
  • Always have a new idea or insight at the ready
  • And most importantly – say Thank You to your customer every time its appropriate (it’s the easiest thing to do but most don’t say it enough)

If the answer is No, “I have decided to work with someone else,” or “I’ve decided to hire someone else,” or “I can’t work with you at this time,” there is no need to be harsh or mean about it. Honesty goes a long way. Also don’t hide from a potential customer by not returning their phone calls or ignoring them.

We are all in this together and in the end it’s about people. So there is another sentiment that is also appropriate, “What goes around, comes around!”

Sooner or later you will be treated as you have treated others.

Image: Seattle Municipal Archives, "City Light customer account operators, 1945". Via Flickr Creative Commons Attribution.

Posted by Eli Hernandez on 01/18 at 02:39 PM in Business

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