A great customer is gold. You enjoying working with them. They enjoy working with you. Man, could you ask for anything more? We’re so thankful for our great clients. And I wonder, what’s in their DNA that makes them so magical?
Time and again, this comes down to respect. And it isn’t just about a service provider relationship (our relationship). Their approach is the same with their employees, their customers, and often stems from their personal lives as well. It’s the old adage that you can tell if someone’s a quality person by how they treat wait staff. If they’re short, rude, or snappy with someone waiting on them, they’re probably putting on an act for you, while great clients are great with everyone.
Now, I’ve worked with some real jokers over the years. Customers who don’t pay their bills, ever. Or ones who complain when you won’t do twice as much work for half the price. (And most of those ones call on us again after we say no thanks, because they inevitably get crap work from the next person/company they try to pinch. But that doesn’t mean they respect you. It just means they’re desperate. But I digress.)
Great clients don’t play these games because they know that a reliable service provider (or employee) won’t be reliable for long if they aren’t treated well, which can mean as little as providing them with the resources they require to do their job properly.
There’s a great story on this subject that Scott Bedbury relayed in his book New Brand World. Following a disastrous ad pitch delivered to Nike by Wieden and Kennedy in the mid-80s, with his butt on the line as Advertising Director of Nike, when asked by Phil Knight how he was going to fix the problem Scott responded by saying they need to pay Wieden and Kennedy more. It may seem borderline ridiculous to reward someone for failure, but that wasn’t the point; Scott understood what was required of Wieden and Kennedy, and knew they could deliver if they had the resources to do so. And that’s a sure sign of respect.
So, how do we know our customers are driven by this culture of respect? Not one, but two of our customers have been recognized as Worldblu’s Most Democratic Workplaces, a sure sign of respect for their employees. So a hearty congratulations to Brainpark and CommunityLend for this auspicious acknowledgement.
And thanks for being so magical.