Deliver on Your Commitments
When working with your customers, whether new or returning, be sure that when you make commitments you can deliver on them. There is no faster way to lose customers than making promises that you cannot keep. This is true whether you are quoting a price on a project, offering to have a product delivered on a certain day or stating project specifications. Say what you are going to do and do what you say.
Letting our customers down is one sure way to lose business. Being true to your word is paramount to building trust and instilling confidence. People do business with people they like and trust. Are you that person?
1. Say what you mean and mean what you say –
Don’t over promise – you are sure to under deliver if you do, thereby letting your customer down. Be honest with the customer. If you are forthcoming and tell them you cannot deliver on that request – be prepared to counter present what you CAN do for them!
For example, a wedding party wants all of their guest rooms available for check in at 11 am on day of arrival. You know you cannot guarantee this fact. Your first thought is “It will be easier to ask for forgiveness later – I want to make sure I get the business.” Why would you worry – just blame the front desk when your client complains – take some money off their bill – that will be easier. How often have we said, “I am so sorry – I communicated to my Front Desk and Housekeeping Manager that this was a requirement of the group and then did not call me at home when this was obviously a problem”. This just makes you and the hotel look dishonest!
In this scenario – what should have been said at the start of the negotiations is that, “We will do our best to have rooms available when your guests arrive however I cannot guarantee that we can honor the request. Please communicate with your guests that they should call the hotel before arriving so we can let them know their room status. If you wish, we can set up a hospitality room (area in the restaurant) for those who arrive early and direct them to that room so that they can sit comfortably and chat while we are preparing their room.” If you do not have a meeting room or a restaurant, offering complimentary luggage storage and directions to a local eatery – maybe offer them a coupon for a discount or free drink at one of your partner restaurants.
2. You never get a second chance to make a first impression –
Follow up when you say you will. If you tell your client you will call him back with the information he has requested on Tuesday – then call him back. If you don’t have all the information yet – call him anyway and let him know the status of what you are working on! Don’t let them sit and wonder where the information is and why can’t he finish this task, more importantly – don’t let him forget about you and call someone else!
How often have you personally been let down waiting for a call back? Would you continue to work with someone who doesn’t honor their commitments?
In this day and age, and this competitive market – it’s hard enough to win the business. Don’t add dishonesty and unreliability to the mix!