On a freezing night last month, I was delighted to attend a fantastic guest speaker event.
Organised by DWF Young Professionals at their Liverpool offices, this was presented by Peter Page and Steve Dickson. Peter Page is a Business Growth Specialist for Marshall Turner, who works with clients to reduce costs and increase sales and profits. Steve Dickson is the Regional Director for Shopper Anonymous UK, who specialise in improving customer service for clients, through measurement, training and analytics, to help them increase profit levels.
This event was an opportunity for young and ambitious professionals like myself, to develop the important skill in working and caring for the needs of customers. This is increasingly relevant in the age of social media, as there is no hiding place!
In addition to being given the opportunity to network other Young Professionals, I also thoroughly enjoyed the event. I learnt some useful advice regarding customer care, which will assist me in my career development. These tips included:
How you communicate is the deadlock that either turns a prospective customer on or off.
- Develop trust and understanding with the customer.
- Listen to what they want, and never take them for granted.
- Plan meetings with clients and prepare beforehand.
- You need to know everything about your product.
- Use emotion as leverage.
- Know your competition’s strengths and weaknesses.
- The purpose of business is to create and keep customers.
- Poor service will drive customers away.
- Take complaints and feedback seriously, and work with customers to make improvements.
Through the above, I now understand that all professionals are also sales people, regardless of industry. This is because we sell who we are to our customers, to create mutually beneficial relationships for both parties. However like a priceless china doll, these relationships are delicate in nature, as they consist of mutual trust and understanding. It is for this reason, that businesses lose customers, if the trust and understanding is damaged, due to poor communication or customer service.
To conclude, I was impressed with Peter and Steve, who drew on their vast experiences, to engage and inform the audience, with passion and enthusiasm, through the power of storytelling. It was a pleasure to listen to them, and also to have the opportunity to network afterwards was a delightful bonus.