Many years ago I was a printing buyer, in charge of production for a large and complex direct mail program. When the inevitable problems occurred, how they were handled factored heavily into my decision as to whether or not to continue doing business with the responsible vendor.
Dealing with problems is never easy, but how you deliver difficult news – and of course follow up by delivering solutions – can make a world of difference in your client relationships.
|HOW TO "MARKET" DIFFICULT NEWS
It’s a fact: sooner or later you’ll have to deliver difficult news to a client. Perhaps you made a mistake or missed a deadline. Maybe a delivery will be delayed, prices have gone up or credit has been denied. Whatever it is, how you present the news (i.e. how you “market” it) can have as big an impact as the news itself. Here’s what you should do:
Finally, don’t forget to ask for the client’s continued support. “Mary, can I count on you to accept my apology and continue to work with me to keep things moving forward?” This step is often neglected, and can go a long way towards cementing the relationship in spite of the current glitch.