1. Provide advice on the financial support available
During an official recession, the Government is likely to be more forthcoming with dedicated support schemes that affected businesses can make use of, or more vocal about measures it is taking to reduce the pain. Although (as of writing) it hasn’t been officially announced that the UK is in recession, keeping an eye on the media, the Government website and on key industry websites can help you to stay up to date with the latest support that’s available.
One of the most useful resources you can recommend to clients feeling the pinch is the Government’s Business Support Helpline, where they’ll be able to access more detailed advice about the various schemes that are in place to help businesses weather the cost of living crisis and the current state of the economy.
The specific helpline that they’ll need to call will depend on which country of the UK they’re situated in, as advice and support will vary but all of the information is on the Government website.
2. Communicate clearly
Times like these really show the importance of good communication, and, in particular, clarity in the company-client relationship.
Clear, regular communication will help to keep your clients reassured that you’re doing your job to the best of your ability and it will also help them to feel some sense of control over their business in what is ultimately a very uncertain situation.
Make a point of phoning your clients at least once a week to check in with them. Online meetings can be a useful way to connect on a more human level with your clients, especially during social distancing measures, when most people haven’t really seen, or interacted with, people from outside their household for a while.
We could spend this entire article talking about the art of communication when it comes to client care, so we won’t go into the specifics here. This blog by Hostinger Academy has some great tips on how to improve your communication with clients and this article by Indeed runs through the specifics in great detail.
And of course, the most important way to communicate effectively is to…
The majority of business owners are probably going to be very anxious at the moment.
They’ll have concerns about everything from how to pay the rent and salaries of staff when they can’t trade, through to worries about what the wider economy and business climate is going to look like after the pandemic has ended.
People are going to need a friendly, familiar person to talk to about what they’re experiencing. As a result, listening is an easy way, to support your clients through this crisis.
Active listening can help you understand what a person is really saying. Active listening is a series of listening techniques that are used by counsellors, therapists and psychologists to help get to the root of problems and offer practical advice.
Some useful active listening skills include:
- Building trust and a rapport
- Showing genuine concern
- Asking specific questions
- Using short verbal affirmations