B. J. Rudell and Jay Brinson argued in favour of some simple courtesy/etiquette concepts in business management and marketing in a SMPS Marketer article: The Etiquette Behind Business Success.
Alas, if I were to check off their suggestions, I would at best receive a low passing grade, and might even fail.
They argue that all people deserve to be treated with respect, that we should be willing and ready to take interruptions to solve others’ problems, and that we should accept meetings with and relate to people who might not have any decision-making authority.
Well, maybe I’m not so bad in some respects. I do my best to listen to employees, colleagues and others, but alas will not respond positively to inbound marketing calls when I sense they are “grind out” calls based on rote.
The writers cover this base from the marketing/caller’s perspective, however:
Customize phone and email communications to your audience. Receiving a cold call from someone who clearly understands your organization’s unique mission and identity is far more respectful than hearing from someone who is blanketing an entire industry with the same general message.
On the other end of the spectrum, the writers wisely suggest that you should really tune in to your new/existing clients.
Extend yourself and your firm to maintain a long-term relationship. It is important that you and your firm be seen as problem-solvers who are willing to make minor, sort-term investments of time and personnel on the client’s behalf. Clients cherish the feeling that you are on their team and appreciate companies that go the extra mile.
B.J. Rudell is marketing director and Jay Brinson is regional vie-president at program management firm Brailsford & Dunlavey.