By Rachael Hammer, Senior Account Executive and Todd Courtney, Senior Account Executive, at Vivid Learning Systems.
What is communication worth? What does miscommunication cause? Mistrust? The end of a relationship? The start of a war? Ok, what about NO communication?
A "Friday Forward" by Rober Glazer (sign up if you haven't already for Robert's Weekly perspectives on achievement, personal growth and pushing limits in life and leadership) was circulated around Vivid recently. It was titled "Going Dark" and discussed the disappointing trend in the professional world, known as "ghosting".
Even if you aren't familiar with the term, it's probably happened to you or you've done it to others. Ghosting is the sudden, abrupt, cease of communication to someone who you've previously spent time with. Maybe a product demo with a new vendor, perhaps an interview with a new candidate.
It happens in the dating world (I'm told), but I've experienced it as a vendor whose product is being evaluated. I suppose this is to be expected to some degree in sales, but the team at Vivid does not operate this way. Not to each other, not in our personal lives, not to our prospects, not to our customers. But we know the term, because it happens to us.
What is communication worth? Why is responsiveness or even just a response important? We all have bosses, deadlines, people we care for, objectives to hit. We’re no different and neither are you. We all deserve a response, even if that response is difficult to give or receive -- or should I say especially when the response is difficult to give or receive.
Think back to a time when you felt a sales person was calling or emailing too much. What could have caused this over-communication? Was it simply that the vendor representative was a less than professional sales person? Sure, they do exist. Or, could it have been that you failed to keep a commitment agreed upon during that initial call? Did you choose to ghost rather than deliver bad news? Maybe you didn’t have any news, so no communication seemed more logical than delivering a message of zero progress. Do you think your ghosting caused an otherwise professional sales person to over-communicate in hopes of completing their process?
When you interact with Vivid, responsiveness is one of our core values. Actually, we call it courage and candor, coupled with rapid decision making. We thought it was important to share our internal standards with the outside world, because we have very high expectations regarding professional courtesy. We do what we say we're going to do. In fact, our clients ranked us highest among 12 other players in our space in a 3rd- party market survey (2018). It's not lip service, it’s a fact backed by data. Also, Vivid’s renewal rate is 96%! Put another way, 96% of our customers continue to do business with us year after year after year.
You can trust us to be transparent, respectful, kind, and guess what? We're going to challenge you when we know a better path based on experience. We want to be your partner, we want to build a lasting relationship, and we will communicate clearly. You're likely going to see our faces through a web cam, receive a LinkedIn invitation to connect and definitely experience our genuine desire to help you succeed. In fact, the same Vivid professional sales staff that helped us reach the top in customer satisfaction, and retain a thriving 96% of our customers, is the same professional sales staff that will be communicating with you. No joke, we not only keep our customers, we maintain and develop our people.
We value communication. And yes, I mean GOOD, honest, timely, professional, non-judgmental communication. As you evaluate your vendor options in this space, pay attention to this all-critical, non-tangible criteria…who would you rather communicate with about something as important as safety? Someone who cares or someone who ghosts?
Now let’s reverse it. Who do we want to communicate with to create a lasting partnership? Someone who shares our values or someone who ghosts? Our communication will consist of a well-constructed plan with appropriate benchmarks from both sides, yours and ours, as we move through your decision process. We are a team.
Take a peek at our Sales Process to learn more about who we bring to the table and your role in the collaborative buying effort. Transparency – this is what you can expect from day one, throughout the customer life cycle.