This week Warren Parratt, the Company Director of Positive People Recruitment, has kindly offered to share his advice & tips on 'Getting it Right for Your Clients & Customers'. Some fantastic advice which I have already started to implement into my own business, make sure you take a read:
We’ve all heard the customer service adage of under promise and over deliver. Imagine that you are your client for a moment. Would you rather get what you briefed the company you’ve assigned a job for, and what you agreed to, or be under promised? Would you rather get what you expect in order to satisfy your business need, or be over delivered?
Neither under-promising, nor over-delivering, are particularly sensible ways of conducting business, and neither are required in order to deliver great customer service and satisfaction.
Here’s a typical under-promise over-delivery scenario. It’s Monday morning and you have been given an urgent and unexpected job that needs to be completed by Wednesday. You tell your client that things are really busy, and it’s going to be tough to make the deadline. It may be that you will need to complete by Thursday morning instead of Wednesday (the under promise), but that you will do what you can. In the back of your mind you know that you can probably juggle the work you have on to squeeze in your client. You may also need to work late to finish the work, but you’re quietly confident the deadline can be achieved.
You end up delivering the work on the Tuesday afternoon (the over deliver). Your client says, “Hey, that’s fantastic, I really appreciate it!”. However, did you really need to (a) give your client cause for concern that the job may not be ready in time, or (b) deliver early? Early delivery is fantastic if you can do it without putting you or your team under any undue pressure, but does your client really care all that much? What they wanted was the job delivered by Wednesday and if you had delivered on Wednesday they still would have appreciated all your time and effort.
What do you think your client really wants from a business transaction with you? They want their work delivered on time, on budget, as briefed and without hassle. They want service with a smile, excellent communication, the job done and your expertise. Also if you do it once they may expect it the next time. If you can maintain fantastic customer care and service each and every time, you won’t need to over deliver. Retaining customers and keeping them happy is a relatively simple task as long as the basics are maintained.
There will be certain times when over-delivering can be advantageous. If, as a result of over-delivering, you can give your client more time, money or power, then by all means go ahead! If there is obvious material gain to be made by your client, then your above and beyond service will be seen in a completely different light.
As for under-promising… well, that’s over to you and the given situation. In some cases it’s not a particularly honest method of doing business. I prefer to use the word transparency. If you are open and honest with a client, and educate them on the realities of your business and what you do, then under-promising shouldn’t be required. By being transparent and honest your client will grow to trust you. Trust leads to increased business, which in turn leads to increased profit. Taking this type of high ground isn’t always easy or convenient, but it works. Here at Positive People we always aim to deliver on our promises.
If you would like to learn more about Warren and Positive People Requirement, head over to www.positivepeople.uk.com
What are your experiences of under promising and/or over delivering?