A new Career Bliss study named marketing manager the eighth unhappiest job, based on an analysis of more than 25,000 user reviews. While we, as agency folk, have little control over the work-life balance, compensation and company culture of our client contacts, we can always stay true to that old adage of trying to be the best part of their day.
Here are some of my favorite ways to give our clients some positive energy:
Enthusiasm is contagious. It’s good to show we’re fired up about projects, which lets our clients know their work is in good hands. It also helps gather better thinking from our creative team if we don’t have a “This again?” attitude.
- Think glass half full
This doesn’t mean being a “yes” guy or gal. It means focusing more on what we can do within a certain budget or time frame than what we can’t.
- Be real
What’s the best way to deal with concerns about some client direction? Voice them. What if a project is getting off track or off budget? I like to raise my hand early. Sometimes it’s how you handle the tough situations that makes a client relationship stronger. Sure, some conversations won’t make a client’s day, but keeping everyone up to speed will make things better in the long run. Straight, timely communication lets clients know we are reliable.
- Make it easy
Clients don’t hire agency partners to make their jobs harder. I keep this in mind with every communication. Over the years, I’ve taken the time to find out whether my client contacts are list-makers, color coders or calendar fiends. It’s good practice to learn how our contacts organize themselves and to adopt their practices. Do they prefer phone or email? There’s a time for both, but it’s smart to adhere to their preferences. I also always send Excel docs that already are formatted for printing. These little things help us live up to our job of making work easier.
- Never underestimate the power of a spot-on GIF or Buzzfeed link
I try to appreciate the sense of humor of our clients. A perfectly timed, light-hearted email can help make a long week a little more bearable.
What are your no-fail tips to being the best part of your client’s day? Or, clients, what can agency people do to make your day better?