Monday, October 17, 2011

How to Gain Your Client’s Trust

In the present economy, clients only do business with firms they trust. And, with overhead dollars so tightly controlled, you must leverage every dollar you spend developing new business. So, here’s the challenge: what can you do to gain a client’s trust in the most cost-effective way?

Here are six of the most important qualities to demonstrate to build trust with your client:

1. You must prove your skill, competence, and experience in being part of a team.
2. You must prove you have “bench strength,” overall resources, an easily understandable organizational structure, and financial stability.
3. You must prove you have a solid reputation with other client partners who have collaborated with you.
4. You must take the time to understand your clients’ overall financial constraints on each project.
5. You must commit to building relationships with all client stakeholders that are integral to project success.
6. You must thoroughly consider all alternatives, and achieve results in a timely manner.

In contrast, here are six ways to quickly sink the relationship:

1. Be late on a deliverable
2. Give an excuse for being late on a deliverable
3. Be slow to return their call
4. Give an excuse why you were slow to return their call
5. Ask for an unexpected change order
6. Give an excuse for waiting to ask for additional money

Get the picture? Remember, excuses only satisfy those who make them. Don’t do it. If you make a mistake, own it. The game is trust. It’s hard to gain it. It’s easy to lose it.

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