Have you ever felt like you are an order taker, taking in client requests from a request form like a Chinese food menu? Order one from column A and one from column B. Most agree that request forms have their place and value but it doesn’t have to be so transactional.
To thrive in today’s business environment, striving to be your client’s valued business partner can help separate you and your team from the appearance of being just an order taker to being a service; a service offering a partnership that, enhances value, shares experience and builds trust.
- Partnership: You are in it together. Achieving success as a team and having a shared desire of a successful end product.
- Value: Not only financial value but the value of your collaboration, skills, and innovation. Embracing the out-of-the-box solution, doing the basics flawlessly and consistently while providing legendary service.
- Experience: Best practices can be one of your most valuable assets. Your team does this work every day, your client maybe a few times a year. Guiding them through the successes and pitfalls from past experiences instead of just doing what was requested shows that you care.
- Trust: Building and cultivating trust are the results of your partnership, value and experience.
Take a look at this YouTube video I found at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h7XqZxsIyks. We are reminded that “at 211 degrees water is hot, at 212 degrees it boils. The extra degree makes all the difference. The one extra degree of effort in business and in life…separates the good from the great!”
Valued Business Partner
When providing a webcast for example, you could easily just come to the venue, setup in the back and wait for the presentation to start. It would meet expectations, but would do little to increase your value. To exceed expectations you could also make sure the PowerPoint is projected and formatted correctly, provide best practices when working with a hybrid audience, brief the presenters on the presentation technology used in the room, and to provide logistical support in blocking their event to name a few. Most of all make sure you are visible and available for any client need, in scope or out, to help ensure their success (and yours).
By becoming your client’s valued business partner you can seamlessly integrate into their business and become an invaluable resource to them and their fellow employees. What are some examples of what you have done to add that extra degree?
Article contributed by Jim Fox, CMMA Board of Directors
Jim, excellent article. Thanks for the inspiration!
Tom Morse said:
Key to becoming a valued business partner is to first develop a clear understanding of your media team’s skills and capabilities. Some organizations may excel at delivery of highly creative work. For some, it might be technical expertise, great equipment, speed of delivery, or some other attributes that differentiate the organization’s media professionals from other service organizations. Use this knowledge and leverage the best the team has to offer to become that valued business partner.