How Loyal Is Your Client, Bridging The Gap Between Sales & Operations

Most people that know me will know that I am not a Sales person by any means and more operational.

Working in Operations I have learnt that the way I work with my clients will impact the sales team by either making a sale easy for them or hard. The easier the sale the more work I will have and the harder the sale the longer it will be to get the sale and ultimately affecting my workload.

Over the years I have sat in front of many clients around operational delivery and support. Some have been brutally honest and have had clients who advised directly that “… you are the best of the worst companies out there, that’s why I order from you”. Well if that’s not a gutting statement and thus leaving the client offices feeling deflated and sad that someone could feel like that about my company I was working for at the time. I could’ve left with either 2 thoughts:

“you don’t have a choice anyway as there are not a lot of companies out there providing this solution and just carry on with how we do things”, quite an arrogant thought.

“that was really a gut wrenching statement and need to do something to change the perception and improve that perception”, a humbling thought but opportunity to fix and grow an area of a business.

With that client statement one ultimately knows that there is no loyalty to the company and how many ‘nice clients’ feel the same but not saying it.

This leaves an opportunity for anyone entering the market with a similar product, focussing on the client delivery and support needs. Horst Schulze, Co Founder of the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Group said in his book, Excellence Wins, “Loyalty is dependent on continuing performance, the minute we start thinking and acting as if we own the customer we are nurturing a dangerous fantasy”.

Today we have to be more nimble in our reaction to change and one step ahead of the client needs. Corporates need to reassess their internal streams and processes of handover between the departments. We cant hide behind the process and workflows especially in the delivery environment anymore and have to be energized to be leading from the front. Operations need to take over once the Sale has been concluded and run the race to be the first at the finish line for handover to the maintenance of the Sale.

In order to build the bridge we need to start with the handshake of respect and honour between one another then build the wheel by creating the interlocking mechanisms to create the robust company and launch the vision even further.

Speak to GrowthSmiths on how to build the interlocking mechanisms that can spearhead the journey of collaboration between streams.