In our highly competitive business world our customers often base their decisions on our ability to hear and understand what their saying. And to achieve that level of understanding requires not only that we learn how to be a good listener, but making that skill part of our employee training. Listening and understanding can be the difference between connecting and not connecting with our customers.
There is a secret that the world is reluctant to share with us. The secret? Becoming a Good Listener Requires Work. And not just a little work but sustained focused work each time we listen. The worlds reluctance to share this bit of knowledge is self-serving, if we learn to become a good listener we will be less prone to conflict and misunderstanding.
Understanding the needs of our customers requires we listen to them. This may seem like a self-evident statement that everyone in business already knows but truth be told, most small business owners and managers rarely ask customers what they want.
Each time we turn around, each time we blink our eyes we are confronted by a world of distractions, and most of these distractions are of little value what we are thinking about or what we are trying to accomplish. I could go as far as saying that most of the daily distractions invading out space are offering us more harm than good and surely do nothing to help us learn how to be a good listener.
Noticing when a customer needs help and information is key to creating a working relationship with them. Once you notice the customers cues it’s important to encourage them to ask questions freely, to let them know you are there to not only sell them something but also to be of service answering the questions they may not even know they have. Learning how to be a good listener will give you the tools you need to anticipate the customers needs.
Building a relationship with a customer happens the first time you meet them, and isn’t dependent on their purchasing something or returning to your business over and over. Building a relationship happens the first time you meet the customer and develops in this very moment, there are no shortcuts to great customers service.