The importance of getting feedback
We all hope we are doing it right and delivering the best service to our customers and clients. But hope isn’t enough! We are all doing business in a hugely competitive world where the customer is King and keeping them happy is everything because without them we wouldn’t have a business!
It is common sense that before we even think about generating new clients or customers we need to ensure that the ones we have are pleased with the service we are delivering. One of the best ways to ensure that we are doing it right is to get truthful feedback from the clients we already have. Feedback is crucial to any business and its bottom line.
So why is feedback so important and what can we learn from it?
- It helps you to identify your customer/client champions. These are the people who want to sing your praises and market your business to others. They offer significant value and at very little cost to you. That cost being that extra mile that you went for them in delivering a first-class service!
- Feedback, good and bad can help you retain your customers and clients. It’s obvious why good feedback would do this but why would not so good feedback help you to retain a disgruntled one? Well, this is because the poor feedback is giving you a warning that you have done something wrong and so rather than keep doing it wrong, you now have the chance to go back to that customer or client, apologise and work with them to identify what went wrong and what you can do to put it right. Most people are reasonable and if they can see that you’ve made every effort to put it right and give them an assurance that it won’t happen again, they will stay with you. They may even admire you for the effort you have made. Without that poor feedback, you wouldn’t have had the opportunity to put right the wrong!
- Winning new business and customers is not easy. We work in an incredibly competitive world. Therefore, we need to constantly look at the customer/client experience and work hard to deliver exactly what our customers want. Collecting feedback is a great way to keep a check on how good we are at giving the customer exactly what he wants. A good question to include in your feedback is ‘What could we have done better?’ But that’s not where it ends! You need to act on what people say you could have done better.
- We need a way of measuring how well we are doing and that measure needs to be real and accurate. Data from your client or customer provides that measure.
- By asking clients/customers what they like or dislike about the way you deliver your service or product, you are effectively telling them that their opinion matters to you and that you value them enough to contact them after the job has been completed!
- Getting feedback and implementing changes based on that feedback, means less lost business. Customers measure good service by how good or bad the service actually was, not how hard you tried!
- Sharing good feedback with staff, and in particular the team responsible for the feedback, is a good morale and confidence booster – it makes people feel happy in their work and motivates them to go that extra mile!
- On the other hand, although a negative comment on feedback can feel raw, it does have its advantages. It not only gives you a chance to put things right, but it provides a good training opportunity for staff.
A Little bit about how we get client feedback at Walker Foster
We are a general legal practice serving the Aire Valley. We have offices in Skipton, Ilkley, Barnoldswick and Silsden. Next year we will be celebrating 100 years in business! That’s not to say we are old fashioned or stuffy. In fact, quite the opposite. Like all good businesses, we are adapting and changing all of the time.
We like to think we are doing things right and giving the best possible service but what’s high tech today will be old hat tomorrow! Today’s fantastic service to our clients will be tomorrows normal standard service.
We need to move with the rest of the world and embrace change. This means building on our experience and knowledge and adapting to the needs of our clients who also live and do business in this ever-changing world. To do all of this, we need to understand what our clients want and need from us and the only way to get that information is to ask them.
At the end of every transaction we contact our clients to ask them for their help in making sure we deliver the best service possible. We explain that their opinion matters and offers valuable insight in to how we are doing.! We ask them to complete a questionnaire and return it to us. The feedback questionnaire asks searching questions about the performance of the lawyer representing them, how they were treated by our support staff and importantly how what they think we could do better! Clients are invited to grade us from 1 – 5 on each question. We always enclose that all important stamped addressed envelope as we want to make the process as easy as possible for clients.
I would just finish by saying that getting feedback doesn’t make a difference to your bottom line but acting on feedback does, so make sure you regularly review what clients and customers are saying about you.
You can contact Liz at
T: 01943 609969