The following reflection was shared by Michelle Waak, Executive Vice President of Leasing, and is a representation of our team’s commitment to the RockStep Way.
Time kills deals. Plain and simple. Time kills deals.
I have a personal rule, and I always instill it in my teams as well, do not let a required response go longer than 24 hours without a reply. Even an “I’m traveling and I’ll get back to you tomorrow” is better than silence. Nothing irks me more than a retailer who has to send a member of my team multiple emails to get a response, to follow up on the status of a deal, or to just get an answer. It’s rude, unprofessional, and really is telling the retailer the deal isn’t really that important. And believe me – that retailer has other opportunities.
Being a fanatic about response time is not just about answering the phone on the first ring when someone calls. It’s about letting all your internal and external contacts feel like they’re your most important priority. It demonstrates that you value their time and empathize with their problem if there is one. However, exactly what is a fanatic and what does it have to do with response time? Dictionaries say a fanatic is a person who is extremely enthusiastic about and devoted to some interest or activity. When a customer or coworker communicates (email, text, phone, que, etc.) with us our standard should be to respond rapidly and without undue delay.
According to a study by ICSC:
· 62% of companies don’t respond to customer emails at all
· 90% of companies don’t provide an acknowledgment to the customer that they received their email
· 97% don’t send a follow-up email to ensure that the customer was satisfied with the company’s response
Always respond to questions and concerns quickly, whether it’s in person, on the phone, by email or by internal communication. This includes simply acknowledging that we got the question and we’re “on it,” as well as keeping those involved continuously updated on the status of outstanding issues. Upon completion, communicate “it’s done.” Rapid response is one of the easiest and best ways to stand out from the crowd.
When it comes to rapid response time, I think of the time it takes for first responders to arrive at the scene they are called to, and how quickly law enforcement arrives when called. Rapid response is important in these situations, wouldn’t you agree?
Response time is also critical in business—in RockStep’s business. When communication moves slowly, so does the business. When communication is rapid, the business moves ahead quickly. There is a monetary value to response time. A slow or no response is a response. And it is a powerful one. Think about that. If you want to impress others, lease vacant space, nail down that investor, help RockStep achieve their goals and become more valuable in your work, be a fanatic about response time! Don’t let time kill your deals!!