Earning Trust when there’s too little time
post # 399 — July 6, 2007 — a Client Relations post
Most of us want to be caring trusted advisors, showing an interest in our clients’ affairs and staying current on what’ on their mind.
But there are only so many hours in a day, and many of us have more than a handful of clients to take care of at once.
So what can you do to earn and deserve trust (and a relationship) if you only have a limited amount of time?
The first point I’d make is to ensure that, in the limited few interactions you can afford the time for, you succeed as coming across as sympathetic and understanding. I don’t necessarily want a lot more of my doctor’s time when I see him or her, I just want to be treated a certain way when we are together.
Second, Getting in contact before I’m needed. (“I’m going to be away: is there anything I can take care of for youbefore I go?”) This is one case where seeking permission (to be unavailable) is better than seeking forgiveness.
I don’t know if the metaphor applies, but the situation reminds me of struggling to be a good parent or marriage partner. You can’t always give the other person all the time they want from you, but there must be ways to maximize the impact of the time you do have.
I’d love to hear everyone’s thoughts on good practice, since I think building and sustaining relationships with limited time is a common challenge.