The right foot: Making the most of a new account

August 20, 2018

Steven Andersen writes an article for O’Dwyer’s about how to navigate the important first few months of a client relationship. 

Intake. Onboarding. Getting to know you. Getting to know all about you. Getting to like you, getting to hope you like me. So the song goes, and it’s pretty close to the experience of the first months of a new communications client engagement.

The first stages of any client relationship are a kind of awkward dance. You’re through the courtship and have won the business. Great. Now the real work starts, and the first step is the crucial phase of really learning about your new client. Not just the highlights from the brief, but figuring out what they need most, how they operate internally and, most importantly, how you can work together to achieve maximum mutual value. It’s also the only chance that you and your team have to make a first impression. Coming in prepared and being efficient with the client’s time is essential.

There are some clients with whom I’ve worked for years who’ve become old friends. We share a history. We speak the same language and know each other’s quirks. We have a level of trust that has withstood squalls and storms. We’re on the same team, and we know our fates are intertwined; if we look good, they look good, and vice versa. In other words, it’s a relationship. But it takes a lot of work to get to that point, and it starts on day one.

Read the whole article here.