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专栏 - 人间烟火

与客户搞好关系的5大要点:如何把趾高气昂的“上帝”变成合作伙伴?

查大伟 2014年12月02日

查大伟(David Chard)是一位领导力培养顾问,在亚太地区拥有30年的从业经验。作为联心管理顾问有限公司(EngagingMinds)的创始人,他全身心致力于通过领导力和领导策略实现个人和组织向敬业型转变。他普通话流利,经常来往中国。他的联系方式是:info@engagingminds.biz
当你把一名客户当做“上帝”,你就舍弃了他们的人性。从今天开始,把你的客户“当作普通人看待”,在合适的人际关系中重新定位你的顾客。

    最近,我收到一位财富中文网读者的电子邮件,提出了一个非常好的问题。

    她在信中写道:

    “客户对待我们的方式让我深感沮丧……他们总是摆出一副‘上帝’的样子,希望我们像仆人般顺从。他们趾高气扬,粗鲁无礼,常说‘我付钱,你就得照我说的做。’这种话。要改变这种客户关系,我应该怎么做?”

    在那些把合作伙伴当作“供应商”,沿用老掉牙的商业模式的地区,以上情况屡见不鲜。在这种商业模式下,客户就是上帝,服务供应商被当作顺从的仆人,甚至是奴隶。年轻时,我曾经在一家广告公司担任业务经理,那时就常常遇到这种情形。

    我记得,曾经有一个客户是一家跨国企业,这家公司对合作伙伴总是抱着“呼之即来挥之即去”的态度,常提各种过分要求,而且给的任务时间还特别短,总是希望我们能够创造奇迹。而我们通常都尽力达到了他们的要求,却从未听到过一声“谢谢”;一旦有半点差池或无法赶上客户要求的进度,我们还要挨骂。事实上,在我第一天接触这家客户时,我就在他们的办公室领教到了这一点。当时我被门卫带到办公室门外,他叫我坐在一张凳子上,告诉我“在这里等一下,等领导需要时再见你。”显然,以前的代理商都被这家客户训练得没了脾气,次次都派人耐心地坐在凳子上等候“上帝”对他们的召唤。

    我当然拒绝接受这种模式,由此开始了一段长时间的努力,直至被客户当做是真正的合作伙伴,而不仅仅是供应商。现在回想起来,那是一段很好的学习经历,让我学到了许多东西,可以在后来30年的客服顾问生涯中多次用到。在我看来,要把“上帝”变成合作伙伴有五大要点,任何人都能做到。分享如下:

    1. 如果你卑躬屈膝,别人就会不把你当回事。如果你将客户奉若神明,在他们面前点头哈腰,他们一不高兴你就战战兢兢,那么客户自然会瞧不起你。为什么?因为你的行为传达出这样一个信息:“我什么都不是,只是一个卑微的服务供应商,而您是有钱的上帝。”或许你曾经见过其他人在他们的上帝面前如此卑躬屈膝,又或许有人告诉过你:“这就是我们的命,只有这样才能活下去。”如果真是这样的话,你听到的都是些糟糕透顶的建议。

    事实上,这一切都取决于你自己,你的言行举止应当值得别人尊重。如果做不到这一点,就得不到尊重。你怎么对待自己,别人就会怎么对待你。所以不要再教别人如何去不尊重你,从现在开始,改变你看待自己的方式:要知道,每个人的自我价值都是一样的,没有人更高贵,没有人更低贱。人的自身价值并不来自于头衔、工资或经验。它是一种天赋,在你出生那一刻就拥有的、无法消减的天赋。相信自己拥有独特的天赋,能够去影响别人,然后昂首挺胸做人。

    “你本身……要比你所说的话更有分量。”

    ——拉尔夫•沃尔多•爱默生

    Recently I received an email from a Fortune China reader with an excellent question.

    Essentially she told me:

    “I feel deeply frustrated about the way our customers treat us…they always act as “Lords” and expect us to just be obedient servants. They act so high and mighty, are often rude, and say things like ‘we pay the money so you just have to do as we say.’ What can I do to change such relationships?”

    This is a very common situation in a region where partners are more often referred to as “vendors” and is based on a very old model of business: the model where customer is Lord and service providers are seen as obedient servants, sometimes as slaves. As a young man I worked as an account executive in an advertising agency and experienced this model regularly.

    I recall one client, a global company that were in the habit of snapping their fingers and making outrageous demands, on short notice and expect us to work miracles. We often did just that, never got so much as a thank you, but could expect verbal abuse if we made the slightest mistake or did not move as fast as they wanted us to. In fact, on my first day serving this client, when I arrived at their office, I was led outside by a janitor and told to sit on a bench and “wait here in case they need something.” It was clear that the previous agency had been trained to have someone sitting patiently on that bench at all times, waiting for the “Lords” to snap their fingers.

    Of course I refused to accept this model and it was the beginning of a long process leading to being accepted as a partner, rather than a vendor. And, looking back, it was a great learning experience with lessons that I was able to apply many times during my 30 years as a consultant serving customers. Here I’m happy to share what I feel are the five most important things anyone can do to transform “Lords” into partners.

    If You Act Like a Slave, Expect to be Treated Like One.If you put your customers on a high pedestal, go in bowing and scraping before them, living in fear of their every displeasure, you can expect to be treated like dirt. Why? Because your behavior conveys the message “I am nothing, just a lowly service provider, and you are the Lord with the money.” Perhaps you have seen others acting life peasants under their Lords, or even been told that “this is our fate, the only way we can survive.” If so, you have been given very bad advice.

    The truth is, it is up to you to behave like someone worthy of respect and if you don’t, you won’t get much. People will pretty much treat you as you treat yourself. So, stop teaching people to disrespect you and start transforming the way you see yourself: get very clear that every person has exactly the same amount of self-worth, not more and not less. Your worth does not come from your title, your salary, or your experience. It is a gift you received at birth and it can never be diminished. Know that you have unique gifts that can make a difference for other people and hold your head up high.

    “Who you are speaks so loudly…I can’t hear a word you’re saying.”

    Ralph Waldo Emerson

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