Blogs

A lunch with a client is never just lunch. A lot of business decisions are made over business lunches. So, what are some do’s and don’ts for a successful business lunch?

Here is a short and sweet 12-point guideline to entertaining business clients.

How to cater to your client’s personal needs

1. Make it close to your client’s place of work.
2. Make sure of any food preferences, dislikes or allergies.
3. Make reservations.
4. Confirm with both the restaurant and your client a couple of days before to remind them.

Often many businesses leave the task of organizing their  paperwork for year-end. Businesses need to have proper paperwork to complete compliance reporting and filing.

Keeping your business documents in order is not a difficult task if you follow a process.

Here are a few tips to make this a little easier:

“I get mail; therefore I am.” ~ Scott Adams

My inbox explodes every time I am away either for a conference, a speaking gig or just some ‘me’ time! Recently, when I came back to my office after attending a personal event on the weekend and then a two day conference, I found my inbox hit the 1500+ mark. Enough!

I declared “Inbox Detox” and that I would have a zero inbox. Easily said, not easily done.
Here’s what I did.

1. I Unsubscribed.

Did you know clutter in a workspace is actually a distraction to your productivity? It weighs you down, it disrupts your thinking and creates an invitation to chaos.

Here are five tips to simplify your workspace

1. Get rid of unnecessary knickknacks and office accessories. They are distractions, create clutter and reduce your focus. Bookshelves, closets, and containers are great for storage.

2. Access folders quickly by using a vertical desktop file sorter instead of stacking papers. Colour coding each folder by topic will provide a great visual for folders you access regularly.

Here’s a recap of the steps so far providing exceptional customer service:

1. Manage customer expectations in advance of your customer making a purchase. It will reduce customer upsets substantially.

2. When a customer  expresses an issue, actively listen by recapping what they have said and address their feelings.

3. Listen to the entire story following the active listening process.

Once you have actively listened to the customer (see Part 2) then you and the customer will become calmer and more open to a solution.

It is important that you allow the customer to tell his or her entire story. In most cases the problem will have occurred because the customers expectation were not met. This is where the mending needs to take place. In Part 1 of this tip, I addressed managing expectations.

When a customer expresses upset or discontent, the way they express themselves maybe alarming on receiving end. As a result what they are saying could be difficult to process.

If you are on the receiving end of an upset customer, the first thing to do is actively listen to the customer’s concerns without interrupting. They need to express themselves fully to feel heard. The listening is a powerful tool for both the customer and the person who is hearing about the issue.

Active listening involves sharing what you’ve heard without adding your own story or becoming defensive. What is important is that when you repeat it back to the customer and include a feeling guess.

Since we are perfectly imperfect as human beings, even if you are a rock star in the area of customer service, you will make mistakes. You will have upset customers from time to time. Sometimes it won’t be because of an error you made. It will be because your customer’s expectations are different than yours.

One of the biggest mistakes business owners and their employees make is not setting up strategies to communicate and manage your customer’s expectation before, during and after a purchase is made.

If your filing system isn’t fast, functional, and fun, you will resist the whole process. David Allen, Getting Started

Imagine your business is fully functional, humming along on its own steam. You are aware of every aspect, nook, and cranny of your business. You have happy customers, happy staff, and a healthy cash flow. The work is delegated to the correct skill sets completed on time and within budget. Your day is jam-packed with overseeing the entire operation business growth. Is this a dream? A system-dependent business can make this a reality.

System-dependent business: