In some respects, our business is no different than catering is for a multi-unit restaurant operator. Yes, we need to have a great product, but we win or lose on our service and execution.
The level of our Team’s execution must be impeccable. However, before we get a chance to show off our talents, the cultural fit must be determined and the seeds for a long-term relationship must be planted early in the process. That’s why we are on the road so often. Initiate during the sales process, and on a regular basis, post the initial transaction, as often as possible. The only way to ensure you have, and are maintaining the relationship with the people you serve, you must get in front of them face to face, as often as possible. You learn so much, they learn so much, and once the personal connections are set and/or re-connected, day-to-day interactions with each other become so much easier. The interactions become more pleasant with a better understanding of the individual.
You ask any great organization, excelling at catering, and they will tell you they have a great relationship with their customers. They know who they are, what they like, and maintain as many details about the individuals as possible. That’s no different in our business.
This last week, my Team and I spent two days in San Francisco visiting three clients, shaking their hands, seeing the whites of their eyes, grabbing a social drink together, and re-connecting. It’s all about the people.