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How to build good client relations by Bobby Raharjo

Making clients happy by delivering good work is the ultimate goal for any agency. But with so many things to accomplish, a lot of time the importance of client relations gets buried under piles of never-ending work. As a result, we tend to focus more on what we do for the clients and forget what we build for them: a strong relationship.

Here are some tips on how to maintain a solid relationship with your clients:

Get to know them better
Every relationship is better when the individuals take the time to know one another. Learn the clients' interests. You will likely spend many hours with them during a project. What food do they like? What sports team do they support? Send them a birthday greeting on their big day. A little bit of thoughtfulness always goes a long way.

Communicate closely
When we ask questions, we understand situations better. Make the time to ask your clients how they feel and how they think, and let them share their thoughts regarding the project and your performance. Never assume anything. Ask and communicate on a regular basis. We often call ourselves communication practitioners, but a lot of times fail to exactly what we preach.

Know when to say 'no'
In many cases, clients get carried away. When requests are made that are not included in the original agreement, don't hesitate to gently explain it to them. Always remember that delivering something of quality is better than overextending yourself beyond your capabilities.

Do what you are paid for
Clients hire us to help solve problems. The more problems we can help them solve, the better. One thing that we often forget is that we are paid as consultants. That means that we are there to consult, not only to execute.

Bobby Raharjo was account manager, Indonesia at Weber Shandwick