How can my organisation make a useful contribution to clients during this period of unprecedented major disruption?

19 March 2020 Posted by: Patrick Woods Posted In: Crisis management, client retention

 

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At the risk of stating the obvious we are all experiencing a level of disruption to our
personal and business lives the like of which few if any of us will ever have encountered.
Understandably uppermost on our minds will be concerns as to whether we are doing all
in our power to keep ourselves and those closest to us safe. In parallel, we need to be
concerned about our organisational well-being – are we adhering to the complex
checklist of items that require attending to in this time of crisis?

Client-facing professionals have a particularly important role to play here as they are the
principal point of contact with customers. If this particular cloud can have a silver lining,
it might be that with less, if any, time required to spend travelling and no face-to-face
client meetings possible for the foreseeable future, there is the opportunity to reflect,
plan and perhaps innovate. So, it’s worth asking the question, what could I, as a key
representative of my organisation, be usefully doing right now on my clients’ behalf?
Here are some, albeit perhaps simple suggestions that are worthy of consideration.

Firstly, maintain contact. Given that many of our customers will themselves be working
from home, remote from their colleagues, they may be experiencing a feeling of
isolation. Reach out to them and offer help, as this will foster continuing trust between
you both.

Secondly, help your clients to shine for their stakeholders. If, through your honesty and
transparency, and by avoiding being defensive and legalistic, you can help customers
communicate with their stakeholders, you can further enhance the quality of your
relationship.

Finally, consider how you can be innovative with your use of digital communication
platforms to maintain the quality of your customer interactions. There are numerous
platforms available to choose from that are likely to be familiar to you already. Perhaps,
to take a specific example, you could use this methodology to facilitate a call between
your CEO and key clients.

Clearly, we are in an environment where our resourcefulness, both at a personal and
organisational level are being put to the test. It is important that we are not found
wanting.

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