All we keep hearing right now is that everyone is busy. So busy. Swamped. Given what we’ve all been through over the last 20 months or so, this is great to hear.
But stop right there just a moment.
What’s making you busy? Hopefully the answer is your clients. Have you actually taken the time to thank them for keeping your business afloat? If you have a team, have you given them a pat on the back for being there? If you outsource or use external contractors, have you shown your appreciation for their endeavours?
It’s all so easy to work IN the business, carrying on with the day to day, going through the motions: wake up, work, eat, sleep, repeat. As our friends on the other side of the Atlantic take a national holiday to celebrate Thanksgiving, it’s time to take stock and show some gratitude and kindness to those around you.
“We must find time to stop and thank the people who
make a difference in our lives”. John F Kennedy
Let’s start with the obvious one, your clients. Where would your business be without them? Yes, you invoice them and yes, they pay you. Transaction done, right? Move on to the next one. Are you treating every customer – regardless of their spend – as a VIP? If not, why not?
Some may think that expressing kindness and gratitude show vulnerability. What a load of old pfffft! Saying thank you has a feel-good ripple effect. Not only will the recipient be uplifted by your gesture but as the giver, you’ll also feel a little ping of satisfaction in the knowledge that you’ve done something positive and kind. And here’s the deal-breaker: showing your gratitude will build customer loyalty. Not only will that customer keep using your services but they’ll more than likely tell their contacts how damned thoughtful and considerate you are. There’s no greater testimony than word of mouth from your customers to help your business grow.
Let’s move on to your staff. Put yourself back into their shoes, before you became the boss. Did you ever feel like a hamster in a wheel, doing your best for the business but feeling overlooked and under-appreciated? Studies show that staff who feel valued and tangibly feel gratitude from their managers are more productive, which can only be good news for you too, right?
And the outsourced contractors. Many small businesses rely on outsourcing. Yes, you pay their invoices when they work for you but think about all those times you’ve thrown a curveball their way and they’ve shifted their priorities and workload to fit you in. All of those last minute changes, bits of free advice over the years ….. all worthy of a thank you!
So now, let’s look at the how. The obvious is to just simply say “thank you”. You’d be surprised how many people overlook this most courteous of traits. Maybe a bonus or a gift at Christmas – but why wait until the one time in the year when your gratitude will get lost in the seasonal noise? Perhaps an evening out for all of your clients and suppliers just to say thank you in a relaxed atmosphere, building in some networking at the same time or a staff outing of some description. You might even want to keep it even simpler than that and order pizza in on a Friday lunchtime, or let everyone knock off an hour or so earlier because of all they’ve done for you that week.
For a memorable thank you, and one that your clients can keep, have you considered direct mail? There’s this amazing invention called the internet where you can arrange a direct mail campaign from the comfort of your own swivel chair! It’s THAT easy!
Someone once wrote “Sorry seems to be the hardest word” – to be honest, for some, I think it’s actually Thank You …..!
If you’re looking for ways to show kindness and express your gratitude but have no idea where to start, why not book a 15 Minute Wow with me and let’s brainstorm together.