Getting Into The Uncomfortable Zone
In yesterday's post we kicked off with one tip to move beyond the fear of visibility. So today's tip moves onto the next step and we're looking at what we do now that we have the information we need. If you missed yesterday's post, you can catch it here.
But first, how did you get on with collecting all the information? How long did it take you to locate it all? Longer than 10 minutes? If so, there's something there about how you are organizing your information to ensure that it is quick and easy to find. So what system of organisation are you using? Let me know, and what you're struggling with, or what works well for you, and we can add this into later posts. Just pop a comment via the comment box below or drop me a tweet.
So you've got your information. The next step is to look at the types of services you offered your past and present clients and we're doing so because of the following great question sent to me by a fellow coach:
"How do I know what my client's want from me and from my services?"
The response I often get is the same I've heard countless times from holistic therapists, which is to tell me what they 'think' the client wants. No one seems to actually ask the client, particularly if they are a client who no longer visits. Why wouldn't we want to find out why they no longer come to us for a treatment session?
How To Overcome This Fear
Now I appreciate this can feel quite scary and it taps into that fear of being visible. Some questions you might be thinking at this stage is 'what if they didn't like me or what I do?', 'What if they don't want to tell me something that they are unhappy about because they might feel embarrassed to tell me?'. There are hundreds of questions that we might be asking ourselves based on what we think the client might say. But honest answer? We won't know until we ask them. So be brave and don't worry. If you do this it will show that
- You are genuinely interested in knowing your clients better so that you can continue to provide fabulous services tailored to them.
- You are not afraid of helpful critiques as it will help you to develop your services.
- You are approachable and therefore a client is more likely to trust being able to be more open with you.
- You are demonstrating how you value your clients and their experiences of your treatments/sessions.
So today's tip is: Contact all your clients and ask them what they think about what you offer.
How Do I Put This Tip Into Action?
You can contact them via your email contacts list that you now have. Offer a friendly email greeting and briefly explain that you are reviewing your services and you would like to ask them to comment on what services that have had from you in the past. You particularly want to know what they liked and did not like, what they would like from you and your services, and how you can improve your services so that its an even better experience for your clients. Keep the email short, cheerful and demonstrate how and why you want to listen to their experiences.
Another way to do this is to use Google survey forms to create a free, quick survey, and pop the link to that survey into your email. I find it's best to give them a date by which you want to receive their feedback, so that you are not hanging on to get it. A gentle reminder a few days before the deadline nudges your client to respond if they want to.
The advantage of a survey is that it is an anonymous experience for the client, so they are likely to be more forthcoming especially where they decided not to come back to you. Even better is at the top of your survey you can state its anonymous, and you can remind them of it in the email you send out to them. It means you'll get a more accurate understanding of why they decided not to return- providing that you asked the question in your survey. Some examples of questions might be....
- Could you tell me how often you came for a treatment/session?
- What did you like about the treatment/session?
- What didn't you like about the treatment/session?
- What could be done to improve your experiences of a treatment/session?
- If you had some sessions but decided not to come back, please could you say why you decided not to return?
- Would you return if things changed? If so, what changes would you like to see that would encourage you to try the sessions again?
I'd suggest you keep the survey short as people don't have time or the inclination to trawl through. Test your survey on a few close friends and ask them how long it took to complete it, and how well they understood the questions you were asking. Once you're happy with it, get it out to your clients.
If you don't feel confident creating a survey, just list the questions in the email, and ask that clients could respond- though be aware that you may not have as many responses mainly because most people feel more comfortable giving their feedback anonymously- it's a human trait!
So that's today's tip. Send out an email and/or a Google survey form to ask your clients what they think and what they have experienced from having treatments with you. In tomorrow's post we will look at how to respond to that feedback in a way that helps you shine, and gets clients to return.
Have a colourful day!