Want to know one of the easiest ways to grow your business?
Consistently create a memorable experience so your ideal customers will come back to you again and again and they will refer other ideal customers to you. Whatever you are offering, people are paying for an experience. It’s your job to make it the best experience possible. Follow these 3 steps to make that happen:
Step #1- Make No Assumptions. Don’t assume that you know what your customers want. Ask them! You can use surveymonkey.com, at no charge, to survey your customers about what they have liked about your business and what they think could be improved. Ask every customer who buys from you the same questions. Clients and customers are generally more than happy to tell you the truth about their experience with you once they know you care.
Step #2- Create a System of Customer Care that is Unparalleled in Your Industry. From the time a customer calls you or finds you on the internet or walks into your store, to the time they buy from you, their experience needs to be awesome. From what you’ve learned from your customers/clients, create a step-by-step plan to make sure every level of their interaction with your business is the best it can be. What extra perks or warm experiences can you add along the way? It’s critical that every customer touch point, from the very beginning to the end of a transaction, is phenomenal. The ONLY way to do that is to carefully systematize your customer care.
Consider one of my clients who own a wine store. The basic sales flow for a wine shop is as follows:
- Customer walks in the store.
- Customer looks around for wines that look interesting. Team member approaches and asks if s/he can help.
- Customer may have some questions about the wines which are cheerfully answered by the team member. Customer is told about the wine tasting in the back of the store.
- Customer chooses wines s/he wants to buy and purchases them. Customer is asked if s/he wants wine notes printed.
- Team member puts wine into a bag and offers to carry to the car.
Excellent customer service needs to occur at each step so the overall experience is optimal.
It doesn’t matter if you sell products or services; the outcome you want is the same- a top-notch customer experience, at every step, every single time. Look at your steps from your customer’s eyes. How can you make them better?
Mindfulness is essential for your business success because when you are calm and centered, you do your best thinking, are happier, and have optimal energy.
Like most things in life, there are a few paths that will help you arrive at the outcome you want. And also like most things in life, the path you choose must resonate with you, not your friend, or your parent, or me. You.
One way to obtain mindfulness is through yoga. What I love most about yoga is that it heals both the body and the mind. It is one of the most powerful agents for real success because it calms you, aids you in getting in touch with your deeper self, sharpens your ability to see the truth, and keeps you in great shape. It is exercise and healing for our bodies, brains and souls.
Are you ready to give it a try or add more classes to your weekly schedule? I practice yoga at least three times a week and it has helped me emotionally, physically and spiritually. In turn, I know that I am a better business leader and mother because of my yoga practice.
I strongly encourage you to test some classes, find the type and teacher that is right for you, and notice the fabulous results!
Whether you have a team of 50, or you have one assistant, in order to run an efficient business, you need to streamline your team. What the heck is that? Well, it’s basically creating clear processes, steps, and procedures for everything your team does, including:
- Clarify every detail of their job responsibilities. What EXACTLY do you want them to do? When? How? For example, if you have an office manager and you tell them to answer the phones- what do you want them to say? If you want him/her to do “follow up” with potential clients, how do they do it? (Phone, email, letter?) What exactly to do want them to say? Creating scripts and templates are incredibly helpful any time you want your team to communicate with potential or actual clients/customers. As you go through this process, make sure what each person is doing is in their “unique abilities” and the only overlap between positions is intentional and purposeful.
- Create clear guidelines for team communication. Again, number of team members is irrelevant. You need to clarify these details: Who needs to communicate with whom? When? How does the communication take place (phone, skype, in person, email?). What is the agenda for each meeting and who determines the agenda? How long is each meeting?
- Get your team and your coach involved in the process. In general, my clients have better success in creating their team systems when they engage both their coach and at least one or two of their team members in the process. Others can often see what you can’t see for yourself. And the collective power of group synergy almost always yields bigger and better results than any one person can accomplish on their own.
Regardless of how long (or little) you’ve been in business for yourself, your team systems are a work in progress. As your business grows, needs change. Be sure to update your job responsibilities and team communication system at least once a year.
If you’d like help with any of the systems in your business- including customer care, daily operations, team, and marketing- send us an email. I’d be happy to talk with you to help determine if I am a good fit for your needs.
As a busy business owner, how do you know what to focus on and what to let go of? The answer lies in vision and systems.
First, create your 3 year vision. This vision should see a business that is running effortlessly, products/services that are being delivered in the best condition possible, a team that works seamlessly together, profits (both professional AND personal) that have increased, customers who are consistently buying from you, and you being much less involved in the day-to-day operations of your business.
Then ask yourself – how is your company going to reach that vision? What do you need to be doing to move towards it? What do you need to let go of in order to reach that vision?
In most businesses, the owner wants to have their hand in every aspect of the company. Unfortunately (or fortunately!), you’re only one person (or two or three in a partnership). You can’t move forward by leaps and bounds with this arrangement.
You also need step-by-step systems in your business so the business runs well without so much of YOU.
These systems include:
- An excellent customer service system, including effective enrollment conversations and follow-up systems with prospective clients
- A savvy low-cost marketing system that attracts ideal clients and highlights your uniqueness
- A team communication system that incorporates accountability
You can help create these systems with an informed coach/consultant. They’ll do the flowcharts for you, and then your team can implement them. In this manner, the systems are designed with your 3 year vision in mind, and you maintain the control you want because you helped create the systems and oversee them.
Ultimately, with vision and systems, you can create a business that runs like a well-oiled machine. You create a business you could sell if you choose to. You create a business where you stop working all the time and start having a lot more freedom and enjoying your life a whole lot more. You create a business you love to run – because you no longer feel enslaved by it. You are energized by it because you run it rather than it running you!