Magazine article New Zealand Management

Put Yourself in Their Shoes: Why Can Some People Effortlessly Attract New Customers While Others Struggle? Carmel Byrne Explores Customer Relations

Magazine article New Zealand Management

Put Yourself in Their Shoes: Why Can Some People Effortlessly Attract New Customers While Others Struggle? Carmel Byrne Explores Customer Relations

Article excerpt

* Daniel is an affable, bright professional man. He's on track for a partnership in his firm but for one major impediment--his poor track record in attracting new business.

He has a good business plan, team support, is well presented and articulate.

So what's going wrong?

Attracting new customers or getting more business from existing ones is the basis for most business growth. It's all about building good customer relationships--but why do some people excel at this and others struggle to put theory into practice?

Sometimes factors exist which are outside the influence of the individual--market conditions, strength of a brand, economic upturn or downturn to name a few. However, these aside, there are some factors that are essential to the success of any business development initiative.

* A good level of self-understanding.

* A supportive mindset.

* An ability to listen to, understand and work with the perspective of your customers.

* A clear plan with specific objectives and quantifiable outcomes.

SELF UNDERSTANDING

When I first started coaching Daniel, I was puzzled at why he struggled with business development success. All the external factors stacked up.

But when we began examining what was really going on, it became clear Daniel was finding it difficult to motivate himself. Yes, he wanted a partnership and looked forward to the challenge, prestige and rewards it would bring. But he wasn't sure he wanted the lifestyle--the long hours, stress and associated family pressures. So, on the face of it, he was not motivated to build business because of this uncertainty.

However when we examined the types of thoughts Daniel had about business development, it became clear that another factor existed. He lacked confidence and belief in his ability to attract new business.

Once this was uncovered, we were able to work on some strategies to boost his confidence and self-belief in this area.

Daniel's awareness of this underlying issue and his ability to manage it led to a swift and significant change in his attitude to business development. Over the course of the past year, he has been actively involved and successful in this area and enjoying it. Removing the key underlying block enabled him to swiftly move forward and actually do what he always knew how to do.

A SUPPORTIVE MINDSET

Some time ago * Carole, a business owner, said to me: "I really struggle with mundane chit chat when talking to clients and prospective clients in social situations. I think they see it as a waste of time. …

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