2020 is taking us all for a ride that no one predicted. With uncertainty running high, your clients might be turning to you for more support than usual. You are likely one of their most trusted advisors, and maintaining and building that trust is more important than ever.
Building trust with them is more than just answering questions as they have them. It’s proactively showing empathy and offering your support, even if business can’t be conducted as usual.
If you’re not sure where to start, we have four easy ways to show clients empathy and support right now.
Reach out proactively
You might normally wait for clients to reach out to you with a question, but right now, clients may be too overwhelmed to even know what to ask. They’re facing new legislation as well as business and personal situations they’ve likely never had to consider before. Your clients might be stressed by the uncertainty of it all.
Reach out to your clients proactively and let them know that you are there to help them if they need it. If you’ve recently implemented an easy way for clients to book a meeting with you, tell them about it. If you read something that makes you think of a client, share that with them.
Reaching out to clients proactively is different than sending a mass email to all of your clients. While those emails serve an important purpose, a quick personal note to a client can go far in showing them that you truly are a trusted advisor.
Create a resource to share information
There is a lot of new legislation related to taxes and financial planning that has been created over the past few months. And it’s full of important information that clients need to know.
If you find yourself fielding the same question from multiple clients, think about how you can answer this more efficiently. Rather than having the same conversation with clients over and over, create a place to share answers to common questions. Depending on your bandwidth and how you like to communicate, you have different options for how to do this.
If email is your preferred mode of communication, you can send regular email newsletters to clients with updates and information. If you prefer writing, write short articles addressing confusing topics you see clients struggling with. Prefer to speak? Film a quick video instead. If none of those options appeal to you, you can share a list of your favorite and most-trusted resources to keep them up to date on new tax and financial changes.
Finding a way to share information outside of one-on-one meetings not only helps you show empathy for your clients, but it reminds them that you are a resource they can trust and depend on even in the most uncertain times.
Stay up to date on tax news easily
Showing empathy for your clients doesn’t only extend to how you interact with them. It also involves keeping your own knowledge up to date.
With everything changing so frequently, staying up to date on tax news can be time-consuming. Rather than spending hours each day reading, find your favorite resources and check them often. Subscribe to the Journal of Accountancy New Alerts to get emails when information important to you is published. Bookmark and visit the AICPA COVID-19 Resource Center for up-to-date information. Find a thought leader that you admire and follow them on Twitter.
Finding easy ways to stay up to date lightens your load so you can show up at your best for your clients each day.
Prioritize your wellness
Burnout is widespread and on the rise. This year, with an extended tax deadline, you might also be struggling with less downtime after tax season.
You can’t be the best business leader and a trusted advisor to your clients if burnout and stress is weighing you down. The cliché is true: you can’t pour from an empty cup. Showing your clients empathy starts with showing yourself some as well.
Take time to breathe, rest, and get the space that you need. If you’re not sure how to do that, read our strategies to avoid burnout.
Showing your clients empathy has always been important for building strong relationships and a thriving business. But it’s even more important now. While changing legislation, financial difficulties, and clients feeling overwhelmed may make it more challenging to provide your clients with support, these tips can help you continue showing empathy and support.