Small Business Talk

The Podcast to Grow your Business Faster

The Value of Listening to Your Clients to Grow Your Business with Natasha Lie

Show Notes

This week’s guest is Natasha Lie from LG Accounting Solutions, which is affectionately known as LGAS. Natasha is a Director of LG Accounting Solutions, a role she has held for the past 8 years. Natasha is a Chartered Accountant (CA) with a degree in Accounting and International business from Edith Cowan University.

Background

Natasha is one of two Directors at LG Accounting Solutions – they are an accounting firm that specialises in working with small and medium businesses with systems and cash flow. Before she was running an accounting business, Natasha was a farmer’s daughter growing up in New Norcia. Growing up as a farmer’s daughter she thought she would have two options in life: be a housewife or become a farmer. When she moved to boarding school, Natasha learned there were more options in life, and became an accountant. Natasha realized she had a passion for supporting business owners and inspiring their success, which is what she does now at LGAS.

“No matter your industry, no matter the problem you are trying to solve for someone, you must learn how to be a great listener. Business owners are often stressed, particularly in the current economy, and I’ve guided some through really high-pressure situations, which required a solid relationship with that business owner and that all starts with being a great listener. If you work in any consultancy space where you are solving problems for business owners, you must develop a great relationship with them because you’ll need it during stressful situations if you are going to genuinely support them. ” Tash said.

Use This Time to Connect With Your Clients on the Phone

The past few months has been challenging for most businesses. Its important to connect and speak with clients and really to listen to the problems they’re having and see if there’s anything you can do to help them through this difficult time. Pick up the phone, not email, check in and see how they are and do they need a hand. Voice to voice is much more personal and with technology such as Zoom you can see a lot more clients. Words can get lost in emails, so definitely being able to see somebody or even hear their voice, you get an idea of where they’re at and how they’re feeling. It may be a case of they just need to speak to somebody and if you’re that somebody you might become top of mind when they next need your services.

Communicating With Clients During COVID-19

Phone calls and verbal communication is a key to maintain and build relationships with clients. A phone call gives the client the opportunity to talk and you to listen. It is part of the communication piece. It’s important to make it clear that it is a check in, not part of the billing cycle. It allows you to pick up extra ways you can help clients and give them peace of mind their needs have been addressed. Unless you reach out and speak to your clients, you don’t know what they need help with.

Grow Your Business Through Listening to Your Clients

Actively listening to your clients is building a relationship. It shows you’re engaged, understand and you’re able to build a relationship which will in turn grow your business. It gives you the opportunity to be able to offer more services to your client. Active listening is not always a skill that comes naturally to all people. However, it is a skill that can be learnt. You need to be aware of the fact that you need to stop, listen to what the other party is saying, absorb and basically interact with clients. A common mistake people make, is they just wait for their turn. They’re not actually listening to see what the other person is saying and hearing the conversation, and they’re just waiting for the pause so that they can jump in and say their bit.

Have a Network of People and Businesses You Know and Trust

Build a relationship with other businesses to form a good network of businesses that you know, trust and have confidence to recommend your clients to. It’s crucial to know they’re going to be well-looked after. Referrals work in a nice big circle. The main aim is to help your clients grow and improve their businesses. A big part of that is referral networks and making sure that they’re well-looked after in all areas of the business.

Have a Plan and Strategy of How to Grow Your Business

Work on continuing to build relationships with existing clients which in turn can lead to referrals and bringing new work in. Engage with a marketing company that can help with a strategy to have a marketing education plan. Upsell to your current client base. What other services do you offer that could be of benefit to them? Have a plan to be able to grow your business and most of that can be about just coming back to listening to your client.

Ask Clients for Feedback

Do an exercise of asking clients why they do business with you. By listening to their answers, you can derive a good strategy to articulate a lot better what you offer to clients. Call 10 of your top clients and have an open conversation about what they think of you, what you do well, what you could do better and why they use you. By doing this you can see what you’re doing well and where you can improve.

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The Value of Listening to Your Clients to Grow Your Business

SBT with NatashaListen to Small Business Talk Episode 077 for the full episode.

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