I attended a networking meeting today and a theme as we went around the table was the handholding we provide our clients.
Every consultant does it, especially if you provide an intangible service.
Every client needs to “feel the love” as one of my clients put it.
And we all have a basic intolerance for things going wrong when the clients actually give little thought to all the times things go right. After all, services are purchased with the assumption they will go right, all the time. But in reality, that’s not always so.
So handholding a client alongside the service providers I represent as a team means we all need that extra support to correct a situation or explain why things went wrong and how to prevent that happening again. Period. That is essential. And checking back to be sure all is well a day, a week, a month later is just good business.
Beyond handholding there is the:
- nudge to go the next step, like sign the proposal, return the paperwork, start the new process, modernize an older one , or make a service more secure and reliable, then you can urge the client to go one step further…
- shove, like placing a deadline for immediate action, or requiring the next senior level to get involved, assessing a monetary price for the additional work required, and/or, heaven forbid, temporarily discontinuing the service until a wrong is righted, then the ultimate…
- tackle, as in the immediate firing of the client and closure of the service for any of a number of reasons: nonpayment. or unsupportable risk to protect everyone involved, or worse, illegal acts.
I prefer handholding. I prefer to keep it breezy and inter-communicative. In being that way the more extreme situations are kept to an absolute minimum.
Not all clients believe we are constant handholders, unfortunately, as my colleagues related many stories, and what reassures me is that my clients are indeed team players with me. And they like handholding, when needed. That fits into my tagline: “we exceed expectations.”
Therapeutic handholding, a form of mental massage therapy.
Reader, tell us why you deliver handholding to your clients too on your LinkedIn profile. Ask them to recommend you for how well you do it.