Maintaining strong client relationships is essential across various B2B and B2C industries. It doesn’t matter if you hold a managerial position or not; effectively dealing with clients demands certain qualities that contribute to fostering these connections. If you’re interested in learning business skills to handle these interactions adeptly, we’ve compiled a list of essential client relationship management skills you should possess.
What is client relationship management?
In business terms, client relationship management refers to how a company interacts with clients. It involves the approach to nurturing the working relationship between the business and the client.
Possessing strong leadership skills in client relationship management is pivotal. A robust client relationship management approach aids in acquiring more clients, boosting client retention, and enhancing the overall business reputation. Conversely, neglecting this aspect can lead to detrimental consequences for the business, resulting in client attrition and negative reviews.
Sustaining positive client feedback hinges on your role as a business partner. Cultivating the necessary client relationship management skills is key to achieving this objective.
The importance of having client relationship management skills
These are the benefits you’ll reap when your business or staff has the right skills in handling clients:
With a good client relationship, you can convince clients to become loyal. This makes you increase your earnings since finding new clients is far more expensive.
Feedbacks are the backbone of improving your customer service. Building a good client relationship paves the way for trust, paving the way for more open communication. As a result, clients are more comfortable sharing their feedback and suggestions for improving your services.
Word of mouth
There is an immense power behind word of mouth. Anything you do with clients can quickly spread within and outside the industry in mere hours. If they are satisfied with your service, they will recommend you to friends, family, acquaintances, and more. Personal referrals are always better than upfront advertising.
Most businesses across all industries have a way of reviewing their services. Firsthand comments from review websites like Business.com, ConsumerAffairs, etc. can affect how others perceive you. If existing clients leave good reviews, you are building a good reputation that can attract more potential clients.
The client relationship management skills you need
Here are the necessary skills and qualities you need to employ in nurturing a good client relationship.
1. Excellent communication skills
Good communication skills are the fundamental ability that makes one effective in getting, keeping, and retaining customers. It comprises listening skills, verbal and non-verbal communication skills, body language, and understanding gestures. A good manager knows how to incorporate various tools and techniques to ease up the communication with clients. You need to have a strong handle on customer relationship management. Remember, communication is your platform to interact with both potential and loyal customers.
If you are going to represent the whole business, you need to be the most trustworthy and reliable person to reach. You have to know how to establish trust easily and make people at ease when talking to you. This trust contributes to a good impression towards you. You can show this in some instances, like displaying empathy for client concerns, knowing full well what to do, and being the right person to ask questions to.
When clients trust you, it is because of your credibility to represent the business. If they don’t believe in you, chances are, they will steer clear of you. So you need to gain that credibility to interact with clients directly. And this is possible by being the expert of your brand, as well as the products or services offered. All clients want someone with authority to talk about the business—give them that.
4. The go-to person
When clients have concerns, be that very person whom they can turn to. As the one in charge of clients, you take responsibility for being their contact person. Failing to acknowledge their needs displays indifference, which affects the working relationship.
Empathy goes a long way in marketing. You must understand and feel for clients whatever their situation is. Instead of pushing for your service or products, you need to get down to their level and make them feel that you can relate. Then, that’s when you will offer solutions that can resolve the client’s problems.
As a business partner, you must ensure that you accomplish the goals and responsibilities entrusted with you. Not only to retain clients but also to satisfy them with fulfilled results. You cannot convince clients to stay with you if you are not providing them the service they need.
Dealing with clients will test how much patience you can handle. It is vital to keep your calm and always be approachable to avoid aggravating your clients. No client would feel valued if you let your annoyance get the best of you. Remember, you need clients just as they need you. Stay approachable to manifest the care your clients want and need.
Dealing with clients means you are pitching sales with them. This requires you to have good persuasion skills to match your effective communication skills. To persuade clients to do business with you and negotiate your way to closing deals with them.
9. Proactiveness with updates
In client management, constant updates are essential to keep clients at ease. You need to be proactive in giving regular updates about the progress. This way, the client will feel confident over your commitment to complete the required responsibilities. It also lets your clients know any drawbacks you are experiencing, which they’ll immensely appreciate because of your transparency. Remember, communication is your platform to interact with potential and loyal customers. Being easily reachable is one way you can stand out from your competition, even if you’re using automation tools to field incoming calls, such as business VoIP or a phone answering service.
Transparency is key to nurturing a client relationship. Without it, there’s no reason for the client to rely on the business. If there are delays, risks, and potential drawbacks, you have to let them know. They will always take after your word. And if you fail to fulfill it even once, clients will have a hard time trusting you and doing business with you again.
Those are just ten of the most essential client relationship management skills you need to remember to keep a profitable business. If you need more proven techniques on keeping a client relationship, you can pick up more helpful ideas from these online management classes from Skill Success:
How to highlight client relationship management skills on your resume
If you are working as a relationship manager, you must know how to emphasize the right skills in your resume. As you already know, your resume impacts your chance of landing interviews with your prospective employers. Thus, it’s only essential that you consider writing a compelling resume that emphasizes your relevant skills and credentials for the job.
Here are some helpful tips on how you can get your resume to stand out among other candidates:
1. Align your skills to what the job description says.
Recruiters only take a few seconds to scan resumes, and what makes them quickly check through fast is finding the right keywords for the job. So if the job description mentioned the required skills or any relevant credential, make sure that you include the exact phrase or similar variation. This way, recruiters will immediately know you are a good fit for the job.
Some of these skills may include client relationship management, conflict resolution, communication skills, strong networking skills, teamwork, and customer service. Ensure that you insert these into your resume summary, skill section, and work history.
2. Write concisely.
Resumes are meant to be one to two pages long only. Thus, every space matters. You don’t need to add fluff that does not add value to your resume.
As a general rule, you must limit your resume summary to one up to two sentences only. For experience description, add a phrase or sentence highlighting what you did. Avoid adding long paragraphs that recruiters won’t bother to read.
3. Quantify results and achievements.
Rather than explaining a narrative of what you did in your previous work, consider quantifying your accomplishments. By giving a measurement, you are reinforcing your effectiveness in that given skill.
For example, you may give a percentage of the number of clients you retained with your competitive client management relationship skills. Giving numbers reinforces more authority–it solidifies experience and results generated.
These are the top three tips you need in highlighting the right customer relationship management skills in your resume. Remember, you get more chances of landing interviews when you add the right skills and write a compelling resume.
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