By Rob Simons
What one common goal do all businesses share? The most frequent response to this question is “profit,” but profit is the result of being successful at business. Verne Harnish, author of Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It…and Why the Rest Don’t (Rockefeller Habits 2.0), has a unique answer to this question: The goal is to make something “easy.” I think Verne is onto something. Your customers shouldn’t have to work hard just to buy your product or engage your services. But how do you do it? Here are four tips to make it easier for clients to work with you and your organization.
1. Include Your Contact Information In Your Email Signature
When I first entered the business world, I never left home without business cards. Today, my “business card” is the signature at the bottom of my email. Since it’s common for customers to communicate and send meeting requests through email, including your contact information makes it easy for them to get in touch with you – and they know that you’ll be accessible. At minimum, include your office phone number, cell number and office address. It’s also useful to include links to your website and social media sites. And make sure you update your email signature on every device that you use for email – including your phone, notebook device and desktop computer.
2. Change Your Voicemail Greeting Daily With Relevant Information
Most businesses no longer have a full-time receptionist to take and relay messages. In fact, many people use their cell phones as their primary phone number. So consider the impression you’re making on callers with your voice message – especially if you just use the default greeting. Jack Daly, author of Hyper Sales Growth: Street-Proven Systems & Processes. How to Grow Quickly & Profitably, taught me the importance of changing my voicemail greeting every day. This allows me to inform callers of my status and proactively set expectations of when they will receive a callback. I can also use this message as a simple marketing tool. An example of my daily voicemail greeting is, “Hi! You’ve reached Rob Simons. I am facilitating an all-day strategic planning session today so I won’t have access to my phone. If you leave me a short message, I will call you back tomorrow morning. Thank you. And I hope to see you at the Scaling Up Summit in San Antonio on May 23-24.”
3. Always Provide Detailed Calendar Events
It’s imperative that you keep an accurate and detailed electronic calendar to successfully manage your time in today’s business world. When sending prospects, customers or colleagues a calendar invite, always include all the important information and consider the perspective of the recipient. A few things to include with every calendar invite are as follows:
- A subject line that make sense to the recipient. For example, if I create a calendar invite to meet with Acme Widget Company, I would title the event “Petra Coach & Acme Widget Company – Initial Introduction.” If I were to simply name it “Acme Widget Company,” it wouldn’t make sense to the recipient.
- Detailed location information, whether physical or virtual. Occasionally, I’ll receive a calendar invite with a generic location, like “Starbucks” or “Conference Room.” I always include the physical address (or dial-in information) in the location line. This is especially important because we often use GPS to get to our meetings.
- Schedule using the recipient’s time zone. This is especially important when working with international organizations or any business in another time zone. Make sure to use the time zone feature when sending out a calendar invite, which allows the meeting to show at the proper time in both your calendar and the recipient’s calendars, so there’s no question as to the time of the meeting.
- A brief agenda or notes about the expectations for the meeting. Many times, I’ll copy and paste the “email trail” from the last email and include it in the notes of the calendar invite. This makes it easy for all the recipients to know why we’re meeting.
4. Physically Open All Your Doors For Business
It’s frustrating to visit an office or retail location with double-doors leading into the space, only to find one of the doors is locked. Why make it difficult for people to physically enter your space? If you have double-doors to your office space, unlock both doors. This small step is another example of making it “easy” for people to do business with you.
The business world is a complicated and an ever-changing place. Make it your goal to do what you can to make it “easy” for people to do business with you.
Rob Simons is a certified Gazelles International Four Decisions™ coach for Petra Coach – a Nashville-based company that companies hire to help build a culture of purpose, alignment, and accountability by implementing the Rockefeller Habits. Rob can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 210-845-2782. And if you happen to get his voicemail, you’ll quickly learn where he’s at.