Recently I was talking to a client of ours who has returned to us year-after-year for her company’s outdoor team building activities.
For any supplier, achieving repeat business is gold! It shows that the service is regularly required by that customer and, importantly, is meeting their needs.
But further than that, this client who I was talking to, reinforced a very important reason why they returned to us - trust!
Trust is a powerful thing. Once you have it in a supplier-customer relationship, it builds a strong connection - a connection that, more often than not, keeps the customer using that supplier.
As a supplier in team building exercises, corporate training programs and corporate event services, we strive in everything we do to build trust with our clients and also with those making an enquiry for the first time.
Firstly, let’s have a look at the importance of trust in selecting the same supplier you have used previously.
Then, I’ll go into how to trust a supplier that you may not have had anything to do with previously.
Even though I come from a background as a team building supplier for over a decade, this article relates to any service you, as a potential customer, may be seeking.
Trust in selecting the same supplier
So you want a service delivered for you that you have had delivered previously. Trust is arguably the number one factor that will help you decide whether you use the same supplier.
1. Did the supplier deliver what you asked?
This gives you confidence in the supplier because it shows that they listened to you from the outset and delivered what you wanted.
2. Did the supplier deliver what they promised?
If the supplier delivered everything they had outlined in their quote, proposal or offer on time, on budget and in a professional manner, they have displayed honesty, integrity and accountability.
3. Was the supplier regular and clear in their communication?
You don’t want to be left with any uncertainty or ambiguity with a service being delivered. If you clearly understood what the supplier was telling you and were kept updated throughout their service, you have a supplier that is transparent and appreciates your position.
Trust in selecting a new supplier
This time you want a service delivered that you have not had previously. Or, if you have had it previously, you want to use a new supplier. Here is my guidance on selecting one based on trust.
1. Was the supplier professional in their quote or proposal?
An important consideration here is whether the supplier provided a quote or proposal to you that not only presents professionally but was delivered to you on time (when you asked for it or when they said they would get it to you) and addresses all of your request.
2. Do other customers recommend their service?
Do some research and check out their customer testimonials on their website, any reviews on Google or their Facebook page, and even ask them for a customer reference. Asking for a reference is a good one because it not only gives you a previous customer to speak to but highlights how enthusiastic the supplier is for your work.
3. What was your first impression and instinct?
In identifying how trustworthy the supplier is, ‘trust’ yourself. By that, I mean trust your first impression whether that was face-to-face, on the phone or via email. And, trust your gut instinct. If something doesn’t seem right or you have a level of uncertainty in your mind, be very cautious of moving ahead with that supplier.
Our perspective as team building suppliers and corporate training providers…
What we focus on as a company to build trust with our clients and potential clients are:
• Delivering what they ask
• Delivering what we promise
• Communicating regularly and clearly
• Presenting ourselves professionally and with courtesy
• Showcasing customer testimonials and providing references
Since we were established in 1994, we have built trust by providing a professional experience that leaves a lasting positive impression on the client.
This trust and lasting positive impression has built many long-term clients to this day.
Michael Cromie, General Manager, Corporate Challenge Events