I Shall Learn To Love My Customers A Little More
Not because it’s good for business but because it makes me feel like a better person.
If you ask me what I bring to the table when it comes to running a business, customer relations would not be one of them.
I am NOT antagonistic but I don’t consider myself a people-pleaser either. I guess I belong to the school of thought that if you run your business like a decent human being, customers will “not hate” you. Yeah, I get it that “not hate” is not the same as “love”. For a business to succeed, your customers have to LOVE you.
We have this running joke that I make people fall in love but it’s my Customer Success Head that keeps them in love.
Apparently, this means I’m more of a hunter than a farmer. Check out this awesome infographic from SOCO Selling:
The one thing that frustrates me about dealing with people is that they need attention and taking care of. For an independent soul, this can be pretty annoying. I’ve written before how I believe people should always solve any problems they encounter themselves and, if they hit a wall they should find a way around it.
But of course as with all personality types, we are never really 100% a type. And this hit me today because despite my hunter-dominant approach towards sales, a tiny bit of me may just be a farmer.
I met up with our biggest customer today and she recalled to the other people at the table why she chose our platform as her learning partner. “Initially, I paid people to build the content and no one succeeded! Then you offered to try at no charge! I wasn’t expecting you to work on my content on a Saturday,” she said, “Imagine my surprise when you called me to clarify a certain point in the deck! Even though I told you the material was boring and you needn’t try so hard, you made an interesting infographic out of it within an hour!
“I was amazed you worked so quickly but I was even more impressed that you clearly made an effort — even though it was a free demo.”
I found myself beaming from ear to ear. Hey, maybe I’m not such a cold, hard, practical businesswoman after all!
I had thought this was me working overtime to close a deal, but to this client, it was all she needed to confirm we would make a great partner for her.
The thing about relationships is this: We think we get what we give, but sometimes, the effect we have on others completely exceeds theirs and our expectations.
And this is why — as more and more business transactions move online — customer support becomes more important. I still like being a hunter but maybe I can live with being 10% farmer, and learn to love my customers more than what I think I’m capable of.
If there is one thing you can do better in your customer support work, what would that be?
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A little about the author:
My day-job is that of a CEO of an edtech startup. When I’m not working at trying to make the business succeed, I’m mum to a 4-year-old rescue dog named Toufu, and wife to a personal trainer with an insane love for ultra-marathons and Quentin Tarantino movies. I love my food so the only way I can blaze those calories is through a mixture of spinning, bootcamping, and rock-climbing. I have 7 tattoos and was chased out of an onsen in Hokkaido because the one of my shoulder looks too “yakuza”. I host a podcast on Learning called “Humanizing Learning” and you can find it on Spotify and Apple Podcasts.
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