Poor communication is one of the reasons why businesses stagnate or even fail. Picture the following scenarios: First, you walk into a store, and no one bothers to greet or assist you. You have to look for the store attendant who seems busy on the phone. In the second scenario, you walk into a store and meet a very aggressive salesperson who forcefully pulls you to a section of the store without considering what you need. He or she talks too much and is a bit handsy. In the third scenario, you walk into a store, and you are welcomed by a friendly salesperson with a warm smile and a greeting. He or she inquires what you need and offers to assist you to search for the perfect item. Which store would you visit again?
Businesses only retain customers who feel appreciated and given the best services. In these modern times where e-commerce is taking over, poor communication between customers and the platform administrators can be a deal-breaker, hence, leading to dwindling sales. Remember, as more people establish businesses, customers have alternatives, and therefore, it is important to gain a competitive advantage by leveraging effective communication.
What is effective communication
It is the vehicle that enables business owners to communicate effectively with others and without misunderstandings. Effective communication is attained when character combines with words, hence, becoming aware of others' needs and gaining the ability to express them.
So, how do you foster effective communication
First, a business owner should communicate in a way that inspire others and leads to strong relationships. Lead by example. Be open with your customers and employees and ask for clarifications whenever needed. Foster an environment of trust by upholding transparency and decorum.
Second, listen to your clients. Effective leaders gain insight into their businesses by listening to the different stakeholders who offer valuable suggestions to improve the business. As a business owner, do not dismiss your customers' opinions. Think about them objectively and strategize accordingly to improve and grow your business.
Third, non-verbal communication is important when engaging your customers. Observe your clients' non-verbal cues and be aware of your own. As a business owner, train your employees to understand the importance of non-verbal communication. Ascertain that they maintain a warm smile, make eye contact, and use an upright posture. These actions make the clients feel welcome and appreciated in one's business enterprise.
Fourth, appreciate your clients by saying a simple "Thank you." Use clear and simple language to ascertain that the right information reaches your clients. Many businesses grow from referrals that depend on the way that one communicates with the clients. Misunderstandings between customers and employees should be solved promptly and amicably. This shows that you value your customers.
Fifth, as a business owner, talk and treat your employees respectfully. The way that you treat your employees speaks volumes to the clients. Some clients will not do business with a proprietor who is rude and arrogant to his or her employees. Many cases have risen where customers avoid businesses owned by individuals who despise their employees. Appreciate them and whenever disputes arise, solve them amicably.
Effective communication does not center around words alone but it is a combination of verbal and non-verbal communication. As a business owner, you should leverage effective communication to inform, motivate, and build trust with customers and other stakeholders.