If you ask us, the foundation of doing good business is building strong relationships with others. That concept extends to the interactions that happens inside of the company (both management & employees) as well as the rapport that is built with clients and vendors that interact with your business. With this in mind, it’s important to consider how you can ensure that you are building healthy relationships throughout your business. Whether it’s a continuous relationship with a customer or a short term exchange with an outside vendor, how you conduct yourself leaves a lasting impression which sets the tone for how that relationship will play out. Having built our business model on the idea of long-lasting relationships with Financial Advisors & Plan Sponsors, ADMIN Partners utilizes four key factors when building relationships with others:
Today we will look at two of these factors and share how ADMIN implements them into relationships with our clients.
The importance of trust is discernible in all aspects of relationship building; however, it is surprisingly overlooked when it comes to business. This is especially true in the world of sales. The high demand and pressure placed on those working in sales can often lend to them caring more about the win than establishing a sense of trust with their prospect. Overall, building trust is not as easy as it sounds. In fact, most people have a preconceived notion of distrust when it comes to those selling a product or service. This is because more often than not, salespeople mistakenly approach prospects with a mouth full of answers to questions they have not yet asked. They assume that what they are selling is what that person needs; but that may not be the case. To create real trust between you and another person or organization, you need to listen.
THE ADMIN APPROACH
To build trust with the Plan Sponsors and Financial Advisors that we work with, we toss the ‘why you need ADMIN’ speech out the window. Instead we approach the client with essential questions that help us determine if the services we provide actually meet the needs that they have. By taking the time to listen to their needs, we can easily determine where the client struggles the most and establish ways that we can alleviate those points of pain. This is how we establish a level of trust. Our prospects will know that we are here to give to them, not take from them. This style of selling also ensures that we are on the same page with the client and that they have a clear understanding as to how the day to day operations of their retirement plan will be handled going forward.
Once trust has been established in a relationship, it is essential that you uphold that with honesty. This is done in two ways: by being upfront about the service/product you are providing and by not making promises that you cannot keep. Both of these factors can fall into question during the sales process. Some salespeople are so eager to land the sale that they end up making guarantees to potential clients that the operations of the business is not able to follow through with. Along with these false hopes, salespeople can often hide fees or processes that will impact a client long after they sign on the dotted line. Not only does this jeopardize the long-term relationship with the client, but it also creates abstract walls between the Sales department and the Operation teams within the organization.
THE ADMIN APPROACH
ADMIN Partners approaches all potential clients from a position of “full disclosure.” This ensures that what we say and how we quote a prospect is actually what we deliver. There are no hidden fees or veiled agendas left to surprise a client after they retain our services. While this can sometimes give an advantage to competition who use dishonest tactics up front, it ensures that we are authentic in our approach and sincere from the start. Instead of rushing Advisors and Plan Sponsors into signing a contract, we take the time to ask & answer questions, walk through our daily operations, and truly determine if we are the best fit for the needs of the retirement plan.
Stay tuned because next week we will take a look into ADMIN’s approach on being present and we will see how we stay transparent with our clients.