Client Satisfaction and Longevity
Let’s face it, it’s very hard to keep all of our clients happy, all of the time. A client-vendor relationship is much like a marriage. The strong relationships last and the weak relationships do not. After the “honeymoon”, when the newness of the relationship has passed and the day to day sets in, the strength of the business relationship, like a marriage, begins to be tested. Services may not be where client expectations are, products may not perform as needed and, sometimes, even the vendor feels that this arrangement may not achieve the desired goals of the business.
This point in the vendor-client relationship is crucial. It requires dedication, education and a keen '“ear” on the part of the vendor. The vendor has to listen to the needs of his client, learn which processes and/or products are needed to solve the deficiencies and purpose to implement these changes to the satisfaction of the client. Along the way, during this process, the vendor-client relationship grows stronger and is geared towards becoming a long-term commitment.
The part of the initial paragraph that mentions vendor dissatisfaction is easy to solve. During initial contract negotiations it is crucial for the vendor to account for all projected client needs, expenses and desired profit margins. After all, if the profit margin is not there, the incentive to perform excellently is not adequate. When this happens the business relationship can dissolve.
So, in conclusion, a long and fruitful business relationship, like a marriage, requires commitment, communication and a sincere desire to foster a relationship that can endure.