Better now than before

Customers come to you because they have a problem they can’t (or don’t want to) solve. And while they may describe their problem in a certain way, it’s important to determine what the customer actually needs, regardless of how poorly the problem is being articulated.

Assuming that they’ve reached out with the intent to actually engage you for your services (as opposed to just kicking the tires), your job then becomes 1) understanding very clearly what the issue is and 2) leaving the customer feeling like you can make the problem go away.

It’s more of an art than a science, and there are many ways to say the wrong thing and scare the customer into never following up or following through. They should leave the conversation with more clarity than they had before connecting with you and if not, you might be trying to solve the wrong problem.

Willie Jackson is a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Consultant & Facilitator with ReadySet, a boutique consulting firm based in the San Francisco Bay Area. He is a frequent writer and speaker on the topics of workplace equity, global diversity, and inclusive leadership. Connect on LinkedIn or get in touch.

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