A recent meeting with a new client reminded me of a few things. Important things that we should not forget.
This Client was looking for a new CPA. Not just because his old CPA had messed up last year’s tax returns. This business owner was sitting in my office was because that old CPA had made every effort to avoid his client and every excuse to explain that this error was not his fault.
This is a great reminder of what our clients and community expect from a professional. Our clients expect us to be knowledgeable and competent regarding our fields of expertise.
Whether you are a physician, a mechanic, a retail store owner or a CPA, you need to have a solid understanding of your products, services and industry. Here is a list of seven qualities that you should use in evaluating any business you patronize:
- Do they answer the phone during business hours?
The telephone is still the #1 way to connect with new customers. If they are too busy to answer the phone, they are likely too busy to provide quality service.
- If they miss your call, do they return your call (or email)?
Not every business owner can be available at all times. However, a business owner focused on client satisfaction will make the time to return calls (or emails) as soon as possible.
- Do they answer your questions thoroughly and do you understand the advice you are receiving?
If someone can clearly explain a complex issue, they likely have a deep understanding of the subject. If you are more confused after talking with a professional, the problem isn’t you, it’s them.
- Do they keep their appointments and commitments on a timely basis?
Time management is a key quality for a successful business owner. If a business is regularly running 30 minutes behind, or misses important deadlines, that is a direct reflection on the owner of that business.
- Are they willing to quote a price for their services…and then stick to their price?
Any business should know what it takes to get the job done and be able to quote a price or range of prices with confidence.
- When they make a mistake, do they correct it as quickly as possible?
I have yet to meet the person who hasn’t made a mistake. If the business failed to fix the problem, they should promptly admit the mistake and do everything they can to correct the issue.
- Do they admit that they don’t know everything?
As a CPA, we have millions of pages of rules and regulations to study. It is impossible to know “everything.” If the professional admits to not knowing the answer but is willing to research the question to provide the correct advice, that is a very good sign!
These are seven simple questions that will help you to decide if a business is worthy of your trust and patronage.
This sponsored content was first published in the December edition of InMaricopa magazine.