When people ask you “Who is your best client?” how do you reply?
For most, it’s the client they personally like; the one who never makes any trouble; the one who makes life easy for them and who always settles up on time and without a murmur.
As with so many things, though, it can be short sighted to prefer the easy relationship to the challenging one. Here’s a different way of looking at it – a quote from the owner of a very successful and expanding SME:
“I just had a meeting with a really fantastic client. They’re critical, constantly telling us that we need to shape up, and where we need to shape up. My account managers are often defensive but the client is doing it because they want to go on working with us – because they care about the relationship.”
This perceptive owner knows that feedback helps to make relationships stronger and makes it easy for you to improve your service and deepen your connection to the client, leading in the longer term to a bigger share of their expenditure.