It is a typical day at work. You are busy, running your business, calling on customers and making sales. Despite not feeling great, you try to tough it out. Eventually you get worse and worse, so you call your family doctor and they agree to work you in, but ask you to see the new doctor in the practice. You are not crazy about the idea, but you feel pretty rotten and agree to see the new doctor.
Once you get to your doctor’s office, you wait while the staff seems to take care of everyone but you. Finally, they get you in an exam room and the new doctor walks in without a hello or a knock and mumbles as he reads your chart. He rambles something about seeing these symptoms before, writes you a prescription and tells you he is scheduling you for surgery ASAP, turns and walks out of the room with out a word or offering to answer any questions.
Would you walk out or run out of that office? He was rude, he didn’t ask you what was wrong, and he recommends radical treatment with out the first test. I have long heard it said that prescription before diagnosis is malpractice. It is also true in business and sales.
The unfamiliar doctor has not built trust and is certainly not a likable character. All other things being equal people do business with people that they know, like and trust.
So what can we do as professionals to be known, liked and trusted?
Add value Always be looking for ways that you can add value to your customers and prospects. Extraordinary Customer service is a scarce commodity. Providing extraordinary value to those who have not done business with you is nearly unheard of. It will be a differentiating value and place you in the front of their minds when they are ready to make an investment.
Be involved Whether it is in your community, in your church, civic organization, local chamber or youth programs; find a place that you can unselfishly give to your community. Don’t do it to network (although that is a byproduct), do it because you want to add value to others and you are passionate about the cause.
Research Learn all you can about your prospects and customers. Know their problems and successes.
Listen – Learn all you can by asking great questions and listening to them. (Hint: They don’t care how great your solution or product is.) Minimize how much you talk about yourself and let them talk about their favorite subject.
Educate without pitching – Successful people are always looking for an edge. To learn a little more. To find another secret. You as an expert about your product or service can provide that information and education.
I met a young business owner named Brandon a few months ago. He owns a home improvement company. In every interaction with him, I have found him to be likable, honest and trustworthy. I knew what he did, but he never once came along and asked me if I needed new gutters or roofing. When I met Brandon, I didn’t need his services, but when the need arose for some repairs, I called him and nobody else. (If you are in Eastern NC and would like to contact Brandon his FB page is https://www.facebook.com/bkseamless.gutters )
Can you give examples of people who you have done business with or know you will do business with when the need arises? How the did they earn your trust?