I read an article recently that talked about our tendency to treat prospects differently than we do clients. It’s kind of like a new relationship – what my Mom always called “Love’s rose-colored glasses.”
When we first meet someone, we tend to put all our best qualities forward and hide those things that (although we later refuse to admit) we fear may be a deal breaker. Later int he relationship, a level of comfort develops that allows our more negative habits to resurface, compounded by the fact that some of the more positive habits we demonstrated in the beginning fade. I call it the relationship Bait and Switch.
It’s the same with our business, There is often a way we treat longtime clients that differs from how we treat prospective clients, and it’s really not genuine or fair.
The ideal lies somewhere in the middle. When you meet a prospective client, there is no reason to perpetuate an image that is not really you, or does not fairly represent your company. On the same note, you should treat all current customers with the same enthusiastic, eager-to-succeed service that your portray to prospects. It’s important to remember that new companies are introducing themselves to your customers every day. Complacency on your part is the surest way to allow a competitor to demonstrate more care for your client than you.
Resist the urge to over-sell yourself in a new relationship, and fight the complacency that comes with an old one. Not only will you build more value into those relationship for greater longevity, but you will likely build more value in you.