Hello SOTGC community,
Showing respect is a basic skill that, for most people, comes easy, but obtaining respect seems to take a little extra work. Whether you are the boss or a team member, your ability to earn respect from those you do business with will determine the depth and length of your success.
When I first started my financial service business, I was given tremendous amounts of advice on how to retain clients and increase revenue. While most entrepreneurs believe going above and beyond for clients is the way to retain and build revenue, I opted to take my own approach in the belief that respect would sustain my business best of all. Our ability to earn respect is a direct impact on a business owner’s revenue. I never bought into the idea that the customer was always right. It’s true that what you are willing to do for a client is important, but what you will not do is just as important. Always offer an opinion or strategy that is supported with facts. To be respected in business you don’t have to be fancy, you have to be right.
Ask yourself, “What does respect mean to me?” My perception has always been that if you’re providing a great product or service that is needed, clients will come. If they like you, they will sign on with you but only if they respect you will they stay. Respect can mean different things to different people. There is a huge difference between catering and influencing. Catering to is when you deliberately do only what you know your clients will agree to. Influence requires the client to respect and value your opinion.
Our actions teach others how to treat us. Doing everything to please the client is not good service, and eventually causes clients to have less respect for you. Respect from clients like any good thing is earned. Have a set of guidelines or procedures and stick to them. Establish your competency of the field you work in. But the ultimate test of respect is the result of your everyday actions. Carry yourself with the utmost respect and clients will acknowledge it. Remember: Not everyone will respect you. Agree to disagree with those who don’t show you respect, and focus your efforts on those who do.
Do you feel that customer retention is directly associated with respect? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.