How you finish a job matters – you know this already. You want to leave everything neat and ready for whoever comes after you, and make sure everyone’s satisfied with a job well done. Then you get your invoices away and it’s on to the next thing.
Or if you’re interesting in developing your business and learning how to be better at what you do, you carry out one extra step: the client debrief.
At CMS, we stress the importance of the debrief. It doesn’t have to be overly complicated or formal. After all, the client is busy and so are you, but there’s always time for a short interview. You can do it yourself, or it’s often better to get a third party to run the interview for you, either in person or on the phone.
The main reason for doing this is to get feedback fast. If the client would hesitate to work with you again, even if it’s something relatively minor, you want to know about it. Perhaps they’re not satisfied with the work, in which case you’ll want to make it right. Perhaps they found it hard to get hold of key people, or there were personal conflicts on site – things you’ll want to raise with staff to make sure it doesn’t happen again.
The client might not have thought these were important enough to raise, or that it was too late to mention. But given the opportunity to say what they really think, they might share. And that gives you a chance to learn, and to fix it. After all, you want to be in the running for the next job, and you also want your clients to be able to recommend you.
Of course, you’re just as likely to receive good feedback, and that’s useful too. Pass it on to motivate your staff. Get it in writing and see if you can use it on your website, or if it’s gone particularly well, as a case study for future marketing material.
The debrief conversation is good business in itself, as it all helps to build your reputation as a company that takes itself seriously. It shows that you value your clients’ opinions, and want to do a good job. It will demonstrate your professionalism, and inspire confidence in your company.
And as a sales hunter, I’d always be looking for the next job too. While you’re rounding off one job with the client, you can also ask what they’ve got coming up next, and express your interest in working with them again.
So really, why wouldn’t you take a few minutes to put in a call and organise a debrief interview?
Download our free guide:
The Really Useful Guide To Construction Marketing
You can read it as part of your CPD with the CIOB