In any relationship actions often speak louder than words. Sometimes it’s easier to say “I care” than to show you care.
For example, losing a customer is always difficult. Sometimes the loss happens through change: a business acquisition, a change in direction, or a change in personnel. That’s why, at Shamrock we follow the rule that when we work for valued customers we can never know too many people in their company, from the office assistant to the CEO, because these uniting relationships often reinforce an association with the company, and help the relationship last through the inevitable changes. This relationship-building shows we care enough about our customer to forge bonds with the entire company, not just our direct contact. We have to be invested in our client’s bottom line.
Of course, there’s one big difference between a personal relationship and a business relationship. In business, we’re always looking for new partners, new people to do business with, because business partnerships are generally more tenuous than personal relationships, due to the nature of business today. Growth is not an option; therefore we must always be cultivating new relationships.
Seeking new business partners proved to work well for us in 2012, when Shamrock showed a growth rate of more than 5 percent over the previous year. We continued to grow in 2012 because we reached out to develop new business alliances, so that if we have attrition we will remain a strong and viable company that continues to provide a sound workplace for our employees.
Losing an employee is also a part of doing business and it often comes with mixed feelings. My employees are family to me and although it hurts to lose good employees, the reality is that they often have to reach for their goals in life. My hope is that, as part of our family, they learned something valuable that will help them achieve their goals. Great employees and great clients are hard to come by. Our Raving Fans philosophy is the foundation of these relationships.
ONE FINAL THOUGHT…
Whether you are a great customer or a great employee, if you aspire to do something bigger and better, I believe you should go out and do it. After all, that’s what I did 30 years ago when I left my former employer for a new venture at what is today the Shamrock Companies. Leaving a safe work environment for new beginnings can be scary, but the rewards may be worth the risk.