At this stage, after reading the Blog articles for the last two (2) weeks we can safely say that the Integration Focused Approach is the one that is aimed at really satisfying the customer. It’s safe to assume that in writing these Blog articles, there would be people or organisations that are not fully aligned with the Integration approach and they may have concerns as to how to transition themselves or their organisation to this model.
This week I want to look at five (5) steps that I would recommend for making that transition. There can always be more steps, especially based on the present state of the individual or organisation, but the five (5) below are what I think may be the most critical.
- It’s NOT About You – The first thing that I would recommend is that you STOP and come to the realization that – It’s NOT About You. Its about the customer, it has always been about the customer. The sooner that this is understood, and you begin acting like this in front of the customer, the sooner the customer will start to respect you and feel like you are genuinely interested in their well-being.
- It’s NOT About The Sale – This may be difficult for some people to adapt, but the customer sees right through this attitude of “I need to close this sale”. Like the first recommendation, this approach needs to be stopped immediately. Your focus should immediately shift to one of delivering the customers’ needs. The sale will come once that (delivering the customers’ needs) is the focus of the engagement.
- Adopt a Partnership Approach – Last week’s Blog article identified this as one of the things that Customers expect in a vendor. A customer needs to see your company as one that they will like to do business with in the future. They will only look at you like this if you treat them like a partner rather than like a customer moving through a transaction.
- Be Solution Focused – Every customer prefers to work with a vendor that positions themselves as being part of the solution. I suggest that tremendous effort be placed on adapting a solution focused approach. Be interested in understanding all the required areas of the customers’ environment that will form a part of the solution. Do not be anxious to draw that line or pull the “Out of Scope” card. Show that you really want to help fix the problem/ find a solution.
- Be The Expert – The customer expects expertise from any vendor that they engage. I suggest that you only engage the customer if you are confident that you have the knowledge that is required to do the job; even if that knowledge requires fully understanding products that may be outside of your scope, but still affect your delivery of the intended solution.
I firmly believe that the most important ingredient in making this transition is the shift in mindset that will immediately be required. One must begin thinking below the surface and really try to gain an in-depth understanding of the customer and what is necessary for their environment. I don’t see this transition happening over night or even over a month. It will take practice and consistent customer interaction not just to build your capability, but to build or in some cases, re-build the customers’ confidence. I guarantee you that once you get there and the customer sees this; the sky is the limit.
We discuss this topic in-depth on September 26th in our Webinar entitled “Implementation vs Integration – What is the Right Approach” Stay tuned to our website www.blunetworks-tt.com for time and registration info.
BLU Networks Consultancy Limited is a Network Integrator and true Solutions Provider, give us a call on 1 868-223-1576 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your next Network Infrastructure related project. We will be happy to assist.