Each of us sets up patterns and habits in our lives. Sometimes they help us to function in a healthy way and at other times they may cause problems for you and your business. Following are some habits that might hurt your business:
1. Frequently being late – When your clients are waiting for you, they may be losing respect. People are very busy and do not usually like have an appointment time that isn’t honoured by you. I have seen people who, after a period of time, actually leave offices in an angry huff because they are not willing to wait for the offending person to arrive. The bad part is that they might not ask for another appointment and will probably tell their friends about this so that the future business prospects are reduced.
The solution is very easy. Be on time for all of your scheduled appointments. In fact, it is better to be five minutes early than five minutes late. Soon you will find that the rewards of doing this will be significant as your clients will be pleased that you respect them and their time.
2. Talking too much – It is easy to lose track of another person’s needs when you are so busy talking that you do not ask them questions and listen for the answer. Have you heard the statement “God gave you two ears and one mouth so you can listen twice as much as you talk”? There is some truth in this. Even if a person is usually quite quiet, it is important to encourage them to talk by asking good questions and leaving opportunities for them to reply.
3. Not honouring your promises – When you say that you will do something it is very important that you follow through. Otherwise, people will not trust you in the future when you make another promise. Make a note to yourself so that you will be cued to do what you have promised. Then make sure that you put the note in a place that will remind you and, more importantly, make sure that you have completed the task before the end of the day.
I am frequently surprised at how many people make promises and then never honour them. Some perhaps just say what they do in order to please the other person. Others may be disorganized and allow the promise to be lost in the busyness of their life. Still others just don’t bother to do what they say they will do. If you want to be a unique and trustworthy business person, make sure that you arrive on time, encourage others to talk and honour all of the promises that you make.