When you have a good rapport with your clients, it can be easy to assume that they’ll talk to you about anything, and that they wouldn’t hesitate to contact you if there were a problem.
In reality, the volume of customer complaints (or lack thereof) is not the best measurement of your clients’ satisfaction levels.
Does your firm have a system for tracking client complaints as they come in? Do you regularly review the performance of your firm, your employees and yourself? Is there a time in your conversations with clients when you ask for their feedback?
In order to combat and read more deeply into your clients’ silence, there are a few steps you can take. For instance, one of the reasons customers aren’t communicating their grievances could be that they don’t know where to go or who to speak to.
Make sure you provide a number of different channels clients can use to contact the firm: a designated email address, a separate phone line or a person who serves as the point of reference for satisfaction-related or client relationship issues.
Be on the lookout for clients who are unhappy but are not talking about it. Although there is the caveat that simplifying the complaint process may increase the number of issues that are voiced, it’s important to go beyond that, looking for behaviour changes or client cues that suggest something is amiss.
A coach can teach you how to anticipate problems and pro-actively work to intercept a service complaint, By doing so, you can express to customers that you have their best interests at heart, which can increase loyalty and improve the chance they will recommend your firm to those in their circle of influence.
Increasing the intimacy of your client relationships can also make it easier to spot red flags signaling dissatisfaction. This closeness can provide insight on new products or services that your customers may need and present more opportunities to prove your value and deepen the relationship.