Professional Services in an Organization

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Have you ever asked yourself what it takes to beat your competitors? Well, if not get this straight, you need professional services in all the aspects of your company. Yes it is costly but it is worth it. Imagine a scenario where you employ unprofessional personal at the front of your office. All your clients will literally run to your competitors, you will incur loses that will not be recovered just because the person at the front office is unprofessional and doesn’t have and PR knowledge on how to handle clients making them run away as soon as they enter your premises.

Not too long ago, I ran across an article that posed a rather intriguing question. “Can customer service deliver a higher ROI than marketing?”

The author, Luke Brynley-Jones, points out that companies typically spend a lot of money on attracting new buyers, but perhaps not enough on fostering closer relationships with current customers.

Brynley-Jones writes: “Companies are spending the equivalent of 2% of their marketing budget on actively maintaining relationships with existing customers, while they blow a figure equivalent to the annual GDP of South Africa on banner ads and PPC.”se5t

He makes a great point.

It just makes sense that closer relationships can help you get even more value from already proven assets.

But let’s take this idea one step further.

Virtually every company operates as both a provider and a consumer. Wouldn’t companies be best served by actively managing the relationships they have with customers and those they share with the vendors that supply all the goods and services necessary to run a successful business?

Recently, I saw a perfect example of this mindset in action at a company called Sitel Operating Corporation.

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Professional service providers can be known from far. They have what it takes to be considered professional. They have specific characteristics that can’t be fabricated by the fake professional service providers. Look out for these characteristic in a company to confirm that it will give you professional services.

Put customer satisfaction first

Understanding and satisfying your customer’s needs are the cornerstones of a successful business. Do what is necessary to meet those needs. After all, without the customer, there is no professional.

You may not view those you work with as your customers, but in many cases, they are. I remember when one of my managers perceived that I was overly stressed. He pulled me aside and sat me down in his office where he told me stories and jokes for the better part of half an hour. He recognized my needs and acted accordingly.

Professionals identify and satisfy their customer’s needs.

2: Make expertise your specialty

The very word professional implies that you are an expert. Technical competence is essential.

  • Become an expert in the skills and tools necessary to do your job.
  • Always perform to the best of your abilities.
  • Keep your knowledge up to date.

Professionals know their trade.

3: Do more than expected

Professionals aren’t bound by a time clock. They are given wide latitude in their daily self-management. They are expected to manage their time and work habits. Don’t abuse the privilege. If you take an hour for personal needs, give back two hours.

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When it comes to professional services, it is costly because it is worth it at the end. Put aside some money for the services. First you need to plan. There are some professional services that you deposit some amount then the rest you pay in instalments. Always make sure to plan before time on how you are going to pay for the services.

Always Discuss Value, Not Fees

Do not waste your breath on discussing fees. If you talk about fees too early in the discussion, there is no basis of comparison, and your fee will be perceived as an expense. Focus on talking about value. And since only the buyer can talk about value, just keep asking deep questions.

Some of you may say, “But I want to be upfront.” That is not upfront but being stupid. Why would you penalise yourself by creating obstacles prospects can use against you? Go ahead if you are a masochist, but otherwise just keep discussing the value the client will get. That is the only factor clients care about. The only reason they ask you about the “cost” early because your colleagues over they years have ill-educated them.

2. Offer Value Savings, Not Discounts

There is a huge psychological difference here. A discount sounds Wal-Mart-ish. Value saving sounds like something prospects must earn with their actions.

Sadly, discounts are offered for no apparent reason when buyers cry loud enough and professionals do not have the courage to walk away from the deal. My take is that either I offer something for free or charge full fee for it. If your give-away is some information product, then you have no loss, but your info product can have huge perceived value.

The other problem with discounting is that it can undermine your reputation and expertise. You will be regarded as the Wal-Mart of your industry.

3. Make Certain Buyers Cannot Compare You to Your Competitors

You can break down your fees to the smallest possible component. If you charge $500 a month for a certain service, it is not $500 a month ($16.6 a day), but less than a daily meal in a semi-decent restaurant.
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