Why an Order Gone Bad is Good for Business
A client gives you an order but disaster strikes and there’s a problem with the job. The customer calls you and lets you know.
Your external response: “Terrible news! I’m so sorry to hear that!”
Your internal response: “Great news! I’m so happy to hear that!”
Problem orders occur now and then. They are like gremlins, sneaking into the pressroom or the bindery, or shipping, wreaking havoc and then disappearing into the night only to pop up in another place at another time.
These gremlins can kill a relationship.
… but …
They can also solidify one.
So, why would this make a sales rep happy? Because the rep sees the opportunity that this problem creates for him.
Everyone makes mistakes. Gremlins come and go and do not favor any one particular customer. Or order. It’s what happens next that can turn this into a chance to solidify an account.
First, meet the immediate need. A blown run of, say, 50,000 does not automatically require a full quantity to satisfy urgent requirements. Find out what the clients needs NOW. Note: This might require some sacrifices on their part. For example, a partial rerun might require digital print equipment, resulting in paper and color differences.
Second, over-communicate the status and delivery of your solution. Keep the client and all affected parties up to date.
Along the way, make sure to apologize, even if it is not 100% your fault.
How you handle this situation is being watched, but still, make sure the client knows all the details. Perhaps when the problem is fully behind you, it would be appropriate to recap the issue and your response as a way to be fully transparent but also pat yourself on the back a little bit.
Oh, and check out The Sales Vault for additional information. Throughout September, we will be holding live presentations on subjects like, Where to Look For Leads, How to Research a Prospect, and How to Create a Prospecting Process. Go tofor more information.
Bill Farquharson is a respected industry expert and highly sought after speaker known for his energetic and entertaining presentations. Bill engages his audiences with wit and wisdom earned as a 40-year print sales veteran while teaching new ideas for solving classic sales challenges. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (781) 934-7036. Bill’s two books, The 25 Best Print Sales Tips Ever and Who’s Making Money at Digital/Inkjet Printing…and How? as well as information on his new subscription-based website, The Sales Vault, are available at salesvault.pro.