Let’s face it, the business we are in is not all smiles and butt kissing everyday. In our profession we deal with A TON of crap from clients…I get it.
Their rates are high, their claims experience sucks, their rates are high, they don’t understand the billing, and did I mention…their rates are high.
Normally we can take it…we teach our staff how to take it and we coach them on how not to let it get the best of them…but once in a while it happens…
There’s that ONE customer that we have about once a year, that just pushes the wrong button. You know the one I’m talking about. They have a ton of policies with you and they complain about a 1.5% increase in their insurance. They threaten to leave every six months or a year, take up about 3 hours of your time and after you’ve bent over backwards to kiss their back-end up and down…they finally act like it was all a joke and pay their bill. Or maybe they really are going to switch, but drag you through the same process!
Once I know that customer is coming (either on the phone or in person)…I now know enough to hear the ring bell chime…fights on!
Now, I’m NOT saying fight with your customers…that would be dumb. But what I am telling you is there are clients that you just need to put your foot down with and quickly fight with them and be done.
Over 10 years I’ve only had to do this about 6 or 7 times…but EVERY time it was effective. Your conversation needs to go like this…
GOLD NUGGET ALERT:
“Ok, (Client First Name)…here’s the deal, I understand where you’re coming from and I get it, however…if there was something more I could do, I would obviously do it…it’s does me NO GOOD to loose business…I come to work every day to make money…if my agency isn’t right for you, then I will help you switch. Where do you want to start looking around?”
Then simply be quiet…
Guess what happens…they finally understand you are a human with a pulse and also gain respect for you because of your honesty and transparency!
And most importantly…they stay with you.
Once again, I’m NOT saying to do this all the time…in fact if you are doing this more than a few times a year…there’s an issue. But once in a while, it needs to be done! Don’t be scared to do it because you will accomplish several things:
1. They won’t ever do this again to you
2. They will stay because they now feel like they “know you” better
3. You both now know where you stand…and you are no longer the door mat!
TIP: Don’t ever let your staff do this under ANY circumstances…they will eventually end up telling everyone off…trust me, I made that mistake…ended up having to fire the girl!
So that’s my tip for today, Don’t be afraid of a good fight!