Perception Alters Productivity

The Power of Your Clients' Non-Verbal Cues

Your client's perception of value starts to form in the very first moment you interact with them (or don't). This time of year, if you pay attention to their nonverbal cues, you can learn what your clients actually think about working with your firm.

Think back to what your first touch or first interaction was with your client? Do you think it was valuable from your client's perspective?

In most cases, the first touch is when the client receives an organizer or PBC list. Do you remember when or how you received their response? Their response, or lack thereof, is probably quite telling.

Which option best completes this sentence?

A client who returns an organizer or PBC list to you late, incomplete, or who doesn't return it at all:

A.) Does not understand the importance of your requests.

B.) Does not place high value on this type of interaction with your firm.

C.) Wonders why they should be doing your job for you or why it's not easy to work with you.

D.) All of the above.

The answer is "D.) All of the above," because a client who doesn't comply with requests for accurate and timely information doesn't have the level of buy-in needed to make this a productive relationship.

Telltale Signs

If we do not receive the items we requested from our business clients in a timely manner or if they are not in the order or form we have requested them, what should that tell us? It should signal to us that either our client didn't value the original interaction or that how we chose to interact with them was ineffective. The same is true of our 1040 clients and their organizers. If we don't get their organizers back, why are we sending them?

The way our clients interact with us is not always their fault. It's more likely that they are responding to the way we interact with them.

Change Comes From Within   

See things from your client's perspective. If you were a client of your firm, how much value would you put on these interactions?

Consider these three questions:

  • What does your firm do to ensure the effectiveness of client interaction?
  • How does your firm interact with your clients today? Instead of sending out packets and emails, would your client's behavior change if you were to interact with them differently?
  • Is there room to improve the way in which the firm engages with clients?

Use this year to track the effectiveness of your firm's interactions with clients. You don't always need to conduct costly surveys. If you focus on your client's responses or lack thereof, it should indicate if you are on the right track or if there is work that needs done. By paying attention to the nonverbal cues, you can identify which methods of engagement work and which ones don't. As a result, you might just discover a better, more productive way of interacting with your clients.

Email LeanCPA to learn more about the value of client perception and how you can make your client interactions more productive.

Lean CPA
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