Let’s explore how to understand our clients, because fundamentally why are you in business?

Take a moment to ask yourself this question and see what you come up with? You may have come up with a myriad of reasons from to make a difference, to follow my passion, because I’m good at what I do, cause I like this stuff, cause I want to make money!

In essence though, you won’t achieve any of this if people aren’t buying your goods or services.

Let me put it another way, you are I business to meet someone’s need.

So how do you understand that need? How do you get in their heads, to understand what they want, need, desire? Do you know what satisfaction looks like for your clients? Do you know what quality means for your clients?

Is it difficult to know what your clients want?

Imagine knowing exactly what your ideal client wants from you! It might sound costly, energy rich and time consuming, however it doesn’t have to be. You just need to ask.

Why? Because our brains are hard wired to answer questions.

When we are asked a question our brains will look for the answer. What’s 2 plus 2? Did you just picture a 4 in your head or thought of 4? You might of even said it out loud! Did answers pop into your head each time I asked a question over the past couple of paragraphs? You might of stopped & though about it and then had trouble concentrating on reading the next section, cause you’re still trying to answer the question.

If you’ve got kids, you know how time consuming and energy sucking it can be when they ask lots of questions. That’s because our brains are looking for the answers, which takes a fair amount of energy. That’s why we say stop asking so many questions! (BTW on average a 3 year old asks about 400 questions a days!)

So if we are hard wired to answer questions and we want to ask our clients to know what they want, what questions should we ask? Quantitative questions? Qualitative questions? To understand what they want, want they like, how we can meet their needs, want they want improved, what sort of questions should we ask them?

There is an old saying, there are no bad answers only bad questions. The aim is to ask quality questions that provide insightful data that supports improving & growing your business. Data which identifies the good things that are working well (so you keep doing them!) and where you need to improve to meet & exceed client expectations.

So what’s a good quality question?

An old work colleague of mine would play the question game. It was all about improving the quality of our questions. For example I would ask do you think it’s going to rain today? He would say yes. Because it’s going to rain somewhere today on earth. I would ask do you think it’s going to rain today here where we are delivering this training program and he would say no doesn’t look like it.

So if you going to get inside your clients heads and understand their needs, you need good quality open questions that collect the data you need.

Do we provide good service? Isn’t anywhere near as effective as…
What do you like most about visiting our clinic?
Is the information we provide post clinic visit helpful?
What’s your biggest health challenge you need help with?
How could we improve our booking system?

How do you ask these questions? Surveys – paper based or online, quick discussions by you or your receptionist, or a feedback form.

The best thing you can do is start asking, see what works and improve it. Approach your top loyal clients you have strong relationships with and start the conversation.

The golden rule of asking for feedback is to be prepared for constructive feedback along with the positive. Remember it’s all good useful data to help improve your business.

Lastly if your unsure we are hard wired to answer questions, next time you go home to your partner or catch up with friends try answering questions with questions and not answering them. Or play the quality questions game, just make sure they know too!!!

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