Don’t Trip Over Unnecessary Challenges
Every day our work worlds are filled with significant challenges. Issues revolve around customers, employees, product, and technology. Wise organizational leaders are continually changing old business models to assure both short-term and long-term survival.
But some of the challenges we experience day-to-day are unnecessary. Frustrations can begin with ineffective communication and less-than-professional business practices. Productivity and job satisfaction suffer. Here are a few suggestions to eliminate some common obstacles.
Make the call. Because our business dealings are so interdependent on each other, it’s not always possible to deliver answers in the time frame we’ve promised. When this happens, the person who has made the request wants and needs one thing, to be kept advised of the status of the situation. Consider this example. You promise a customer you’ll have an answer by noon. At 11:45, the information you need is not ready. Would you rather make the call to the customer at 11:45 or get a call at 12:30 wondering where the information is? Making the call avoids a potentially negative and damaging interaction and maintains trust. Always keep people advised of the status of their request.
Don’t abuse electronic communication. We’ve all read the articles about someone (or we’ve been guilty ourselves) who accidentally hits the “send” button on the e-mail and shouldn’t have. But that’s not what I’m talking about here.
I’m referring to too much “paperless.” Paperless systems are good to a degree. But when a person gets an electronic letter that says to check a web site for additional information or attached is the seventy-eight page document for review, that’s electronic communication abuse. Is there information you can mention in a cover note that will make doing business with you easier? Consider sending multi-page documents via snail mail so the recipient doesn’t have to take the time and resources to print it if they need to work from a hard copy.
When in doubt, ask the person getting the information how he or she would like it sent. Many communications are never reviewed because they are caught in electronic mail jail.
Adhere to professional business practices. In the fast-paced, competitive world, it’s very important that the people who do business with you see you as a professional and responsive individual. Just a few business basics will keep you highly regarded.
This may sound like a broken record, but it bears repeating. Please change your outgoing voice mail message daily and date it. Be sure your callers know when they can expect a call back. We live in a deadline world. Business success comes to those who are the most reliable and responsive. If your voice mail message is not current, you may miss a great business opportunity.
Always look your best, in and out of the office. The one day you’re comfortable and casual may just be the day a big deal is offered and you need to look top notch. Your attire reflects how you view yourself and how others perceive you.
Play by the rules as much as possible. Those people who try to make everything an exception quickly loose credibility. Sticking to guidelines in terms of timeframes, quality and accuracy of information, and customer billing will make people want to do business with you. Put yourself in the other person’s shoes before asking for exceptions.
Each of us has the ability every day to make our business world a more pleasant, productive one. Don’t let unnecessary challenges get in the way of being the best you can be.
Emily Huling Selling Strategies, Inc. P.O. Box 200 Terrell, NC 28682
Phone: 888-309-8802 Fax: 888-309-7355