Making Business Personal Again
By Diane Conklin
It's not uncommon to find that as businesses grow they have a tendency to lose sight of the very things that made them who they are.
That thing is the relationships the business has built and maintains with its list - the people on your list who have contributed to its success. Your clients! People are so important, they're the most important part of your business. They're in our coaching programs, they have invested in our products and services and many of them have watched us develop from individuals with an idea into fully-fledged businesses with missions and goals.
As we grow our businesses, we systemize, leverage and build teams. As these things occur, it's sometimes easy to lose the personal touch we once had with our team and with the people on our list - the people who are so important to our success and to our business.
It's going to happen. Your business is going to grow, and as it does you're going to get busier and you'll have less time to focus on each individual person along the way. That doesn't mean your business has to become less personal. You, the business owner, may not have as much time to reach out to each person individually, like you did when you first started your business, but your team is an extension of you and they're capable of reaching out to make your clients and prospects feel that personal touch from your company, even if it's not you personally reaching out to them.
The key is to acknowledge them. Acknowledge people with phone calls, support them by answering questions honestly and refer other people to their businesses. Even a simple gesture like sending a card, or a note, or an email, directly from you, when you know a person is going through a difficult or stressful time, or they have something going on in their life. Even as your business grows, you still have time for the simple gestures that show just how personal your business still is and just how important your relationship with each individual person on your list is.
One author and business leader, Richard Branson, uses the personal touch in his companies a lot. He has over 300 companies and visits each of them at least once a year. Pretty amazing when you think about how busy Richard Branson is. It just shows you the importance he places on it and how much he wants to keep the one-on-one, personal touch alive in all of his companies.
Systemize your business, leverage your business, but don't lose the personal touch.
Be aware of what you say on phone calls, support people with honest answers, make time for the simple gestures and be you. You'll be blown away by the amount of growth you will experience just by being you and keeping your business personal.