Words of Wisdom from My Grandmother
When I was eight years old, I sent a very belated thank you to my grandmother for a birthday gift. A few days later, she called. I apologized for taking so long to send the letter, but my grandmother, in typical grandmother fashion, said, “What’s important is that you took the time to think of me.” Now, if you knew my grandmother, you’d know that this lovely Hallmark moment was 80% sincere and 20% guilt. But that’s OK. Her comment has guided me ever since in my relationships with family, friends, and business associates.
We’re No Different
We’re no different than my grandmother. We want our friends, family, and acquaintances to think of us. We want them to ask about our lives, to send congratulations, and to remember important dates like our birthday and anniversary. No one is perfect, and no one expects you to be, but they do expect you to make a sincere effort.
In business, “Taking the Time” is a mindset. We all know it’s easier and less expensive to keep an existing customer than to acquire a new one. That fact has been drilled into our brain repeatedly. Yet, we devote most of our energy to chasing new customers or simply reacting to existing ones. What we rarely do is contact our existing customers. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes. When was the last time you called a customer for advice about a product or service? How often do you send out surveys asking for feedback? Do you ever phone a customer just to ask how they are doing without launching into a sales pitch?