Whether or not your realize it, your conduct in professional settings has an immense impact on how customers, both current and potential, and other professionals will perceive you and whether or not you’ll even be considered for future opportunities. Mastering social skills when it comes to your business will build your confidence, brand, and even magnify the success of your business.
If you want to effectively manage other’s perceptions of you and your business, you need to begin with the end in mind. Mastering these tips will help you maintain a positive impression whether you’re face-to-face or interacting online:
- Time is of the essence
If you have a meeting, never show up late. Sure, things happen, but wasting both your customers’ time as well as other business owners will reflect poorly on you. Make sure you always show up early for meetings (whether in person or on Skype) and always respond to inquiries quickly.
- Be engaged and listen
Not paying attention and listening during a meeting or ignoring customer complaints online is a bad behavior that will stand out. By actively listening, no matter who the speaker is, you will demonstrate that you are a professional who cares.
- Remember to use your manners
Politeness, courtesy, and overall niceness are qualities missing in many contemporary businesses. Sadly, this can upset just about anyone you work with. Manners are essential both online and off because they show consideration for those around us. Remember to always say thank you; being grateful will reflect both on you and your business.
- Handle conflict professionally
Conflict is unavoidable. When it happens, make sure you’re maintaining a professional demeanor by discussing the issue like an adult. Don’t engage in passive aggressive antics or send angry emails, as this will only damage your reputation. Not only will this result in the loss of the customer, other customers will be put off as well. Customers want to be heard, not argued with. If you instead treat all customers with respect, they will respect you as well as your business.