“It takes two to tango.” We’ve all at least heard this saying, if not used it ourselves. Actually, it’s from a song title recorded by both Pearl Bailey and Louis Armstrong in the early 1950’s. “Takes two to tango…two to really get the feeling of romance…you can sail on a ship by yourself…but it takes two to do the dance of love.”
I’ve often thought about this phrase in relationship to The VCP Process®. You can go into business and be the lone ranger, struggling to do it all yourself. Or you can bring on a team to help you in areas you’re not interested or skilled in. A significant part of your team is made up of the business professionals you develop relationships with over time, relationships that you nurture and value. The budding business-related “romances.” These often result in an exchange of referrals which, in the minds of successful professionals, is the gold standard in business. The referrals you receive have a higher probability of resulting in closed business than those names you got from running after leads.
We’re talking about The VCP Process®, so just to remind you, VCP is the acronym for Visibility, Credibility, Profitability.
So how do you go from the first step, visibility, to credibility? From the first dance to dinner?
Here are some questions to ask yourself. Do you keep appointments? Do you show up on time (or earlier)? Do you deliver more than you promised? Do you have a positive and supportive attitude? Do you treat people with respect? Do you speak the truth and deliver the facts about your products and services? Are you someone that others can completely trust and depend on?
Credibility is the 2nd stage of The VCP Process®. Developing credibility grows and flourishes when you follow through with what you say you will do; when you deliver the best customer service possible; when you are pleasant and supportive; when services are rendered on time and with a smile. Results do speak louder than words. And Credibility must be built before you can reach the 3rd stage, Profitability.
What are some of the actions you can take immediately to help you move from Visibility to Credibility? Find ways to do things that are memorable. Be consistent. Be your genuine self. Be compassionate. Help others reach their goals. Be professional. Give referrals to other professionals when appropriate.
Always thank your client or customer for their order – or for just their inquiry about your services. Always thank your referral partner for referrals given, perhaps with a handwritten written note.
Treat your best customers to lunch. Thank your best referral partners with a dinner for two. Have flowers delivered to surprise a business colleague.
Offer to help others in some way. Perhaps send an article that they might find valuable or an inspiring quote to help uplift them.
Be consistent in the positive ways that you do business.
People often turn to others, third parties, to determine credibility and quality of service. They ask their friends, relatives, neighbors or colleagues who have done business with you about their experience. Would these people vouch for you and say you are honest and the services or products you offer are effective and live up to the claim? Can you be counted on to respond in a timely manner?
Do you have work to do to fortify and bolster your actions to build your credibility? Can you think of more things you can do immediately to move the process along? Remember, this all takes time, patience and work. It takes time to build a romance and it “takes two to tango.”
Constantly being and staying Visible in the community and continually taking the actions to strengthen your Credibility with superior customer service and good business practices will bring you right to the doorstep of Profitability.