When it comes to owning a small business, mistakes are bound to be made. With all of obstacles that appear along the way it can be easy for things to get lost in the shuffle. Whether you scheduled an appointment with a customer for the wrong day or lost a customer's paperwork, things happen and the silver lining of it all is that those little mistakes will end up making your business stronger in the long run. If you fix them.
With that being said, here are four ways to remain calm, cool, and collected after a blunder (or two):
First things first - make sure to admit that you made a mistake. Nobody likes someone that doesn’t take responsibility for their actions. It’s kind of like the teacher that gave you the incorrect grade on your exam but blamed it on your handwriting instead of their carelessness. So, don’t be that bad teacher, be that fantastic, praised, wonderful teacher who graciously acknowledged their own failure to read the exam thoroughly. To speak in the language of a green industry business, if you fail to meet a client at a time that was agreed upon, take full responsibility. The tried and true “customer is always right” is usually the right mindset.
Move quickly to fix it. The faster you move to fix a mistake, the more apparent it will be to your customer that you care. If you take your time after a blunder and choose to dilly dally, you customer perceives that you simply don’t care that much about their satisfaction or, worse, that you don’t value their business. You and I both know that’s not true, so learn to think on your feet.
While it’s impossible to guarantee that you’re always going to know what to do in any given situation, it can be helpful to think of hypothetical problems that could come up and then think of possible solutions. This way you will be as prepared as you possibly can be. Wouldn’t it be great if we all had the ability to see into the future? It can be tempting to think so but life is spontaneous and most of the time I think that’s pretty great.
Like all relationships, whether they are personal or professional, communication will always be the key. It is the foundation of every great relationship and I think you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone that would tell you differently. To provide a real-life example, Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak of Apple didn’t necessarily get along but communication was always present.
Want a tip to make your communication better? Get field service software. It will help you store important customer information so you can retain customer information - like a complete history - and access it immediately. If, for instance, you know that you've messed up on this customer in the past and you're in danger of losing them, you may choose to do communicate differently than if they have a perfect history.
Learn from your mistake so it doesn’t happen again. I know it’s cliché, but mistakes are a part of life and they are necessary for us to grow, both personally and professionally. So, when mistakes happen, which they inevitably will, take the time to assess them to make sure that it doesn’t happen again. Mistakes allow for your green industry business to locate the problems and then, eventually, work out the kinks so that you can have a highly efficient, fully functioning, grade A company.