Monday, February 8, 2010

Customers Needs - Listening

Have you ever encountered a potential client who hasn't been straight up with you?

Sometimes people will ask you a question without actually asking the question.

Case in point - a young lady came in today with some paperwork and asked about a specific line of study. Did she want to know about that line of study? Yes, she did. But what she didn't mention was that she also had a fallback position for another course that she was interested in.

What did I do? I looked at her paperwork and instantly decided that we did not have anything on offer that was suitable for her based on her past learning's. I basically dismissed her and sent her on her way.

It didn't take long for me to realise my error and fortunately for me (and her) she hadn't left the car park yet so I was able to have a proper chat with her about her options. It turned out that she had a fallback position and was really interested in other courses we have available.

The moral of the story -

  1. Don't assume you know what a customer wants, how much knowledge they have or what their motivations are.

  2. Be open. Listen to the customer and let them speak.

  3. Don't dismiss people without knowing what is really going on and what they want to know.

  4. If you are wrong - go and find the person and put it right.

It's easy to - assume someone elses motivations and thoughts and lose a potential client without actually exploring the possibilities and other available options.

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