Earlier this month our PEC newsletter publisher, Anne Johnson, suggested that the theme for this month’s newsletter should be Giving Thanks. So I thought about this trying to find a tip or trick that would tie my monthly article to this topic. I finally found that link! My work-related tasks in September led me to the content for this article. That is, giving thanks to my clients for sharing your personal life and interests with me AND for continuing to show an interest in my life as well.
How did I stumble upon this topic? Well, first, you need to know a little bit about us. The month of September is traditionally the time when a large number of our client upgrade or renew Act! We, as good consultants, reach out to them about their renewal expiration. This call gives us an opportunity to contact many of our clients directly to discuss what is going on with Act! and explain its newest features and services. We are always here to help our clients keep their databases in top working condition… When we connect, we often hear the phrase, “I’ve been meaning to call you!”
There was an unexpected benefit for me during this year’s calls. My call gave me an opportunity to catch up on what was happening in their world, both personally and professionally. While that may sound simplistic, remember, we all live and work in a time where emailing, texting, social media, and other electronic methods of communication have almost replaced a regular phone call to our clients. When making my calls last month, I re-discovered that nothing replaces what a plain old phone conversation can do to reaffirm the special relationship that an Act! client has with their ACC.
Every conversation that I had with clients in the past few weeks resulted in my catching up on what’s really happened in their businesses. I learned about their staff changes as well as additional products and services they were offering, and how their business was doing. But most importantly I heard things about their personal lives. And that experience of sharing was very fulfilling; it gave me a warm feeling of connection that I had not experienced often enough lately.
My Personal Goal
So, as a result, I have decided to set aside a block of time every week to contact several clients and “check in” just to chat about what is going on with them both professionally and personally. I know that I am delighted when someone with whom I have a good relationship but has drifted away, calls me out of the blue to say hello. So, why not do the same for my clients? Undoubtedly, one or both of us will say at some point in the conversation, “We really should talk more often.” And, it will remind me why I am driven to continue to be my client’s trusted technology advisor. And THAT is what my job really is about!
I am so very grateful to have such loyal and committed clients who depend on me to help them make their work easier and more productive but also feel confident enough in me to share their personal lives!
I challenge you to set aside some time, pick up the phone and call a few of your clients that you may not have talked to recently. Build that connection and pay that gratitude forward. You will be glad you did.