What do business clients really want?
Jessica Shuwalow, Rethink Ambassador (Business Development and Marketing Manager)
Is there something missing from your business or your business relationships? In the past business clients have tended to be happy as long as they saw a strong Return On Investment (ROI), and to be honest some still are. But there’s a growing trend for many businesses to no longer settle for the status quo and these businesses hold an innate desire to operate on a social level and work with other organisations who share this desire.
While I don’t pretend to have all the answers, there are a few things I’ve learnt and know to be true for myself and Rethink Financial Group (Rethink). It’s not enough to have the best technical skills and deliver the best return for clients. When we, Rethink, choose a business to support us as a business, we put deliverables such as ROI towards the bottom of our requirements. It’s more important to us that a company really listens to us, shares our vision and believes in what we’re trying to achieve. If you don’t believe in yourself or your client, then why would anyone else…
It’s not just us, Rethink, who want more from our business to business service providers and relationships these days. In our recent Rethink Financial Group client survey, local small to medium business owners told us that they equally foremost want a service provider that not only ‘has the technical skills’ (40%), but that they also want a company ‘that gets me, shares my beliefs and that I feel aligned to’ (40%).
The demand for a socially conscious business is also driven by consumers and employees. In a report I read recently (McGlone and Spain), 61% of Millennials feel personally responsible for making a difference in the world. They believe it is their responsibility, along with corporate organisations, to make the world a better place. 79% of Millennials want to be attributed to a company that contributes to society.
So how do you fulfil your business client’s wants and needs? I believe the recipe for delivering business clients with what they really want is no different to working with individuals or consumers. That recipe is, to really actively listen to the client, understand them, ‘get’ what it is that’s really important to them and what they believe in. There’s no point achieving a 200% ROI for a client if they are activists for the environment and half of that 200% return is being generated through means that are detrimental to the environment. And if you don’t believe in what a client is trying to achieve or don’t believe you can support them, be honest about it and explain that you don’t feel you’re the right fit for them.
By staying true to what you believe in and know to be true for you, the rest will follow. Passion and energy is infectious and if you really love and believe in what you’re doing – then others will too.