Sometimes problems present themselves during a project and communicating those issues to the client becomes of utmost importance. It may sound simple enough but failing to do so can be the difference between a customer that understands the issues and one that is incredibly frustrated by them. Mick Ribault, president and founder of Dragonfly Pond Works in Apex, North Carolina, has found that pictures are one of the best tools that he can use to communicate problems to his clients. This has ensured that information is always accurately (and timely) relayed, all without requiring customers to come on-site. Since Ribault’s company specializes in pond and lake work, avoiding that hassle has been invaluable.
Ribault says that not only do pictures take the place of being there in person, but they also help communicate information that might be difficult to understand otherwise.
“Oftentimes the issues that arise can be very technical in nature and hard to explain without the client having an understanding of ponds, lakes and their associated components,” Ribault says. “Pictures bridge that gap. Many of our clients may also not have the time to drive to the site to see a problem in person, not to mention that many of the sites are difficult to access.”
Getting pictures out to clients has also been simplified for employees of Dragonfly as the result of a custom app that they use. Pictures can be efficiently emailed to the customer and remain part of that customer’s account information.
Ribault says that using pictures isn’t exactly new for the company but that the app is — and that’s made their workflow much more seamless.
“Through our custom app, we have been able to streamline the process,” Ribault says. “Before, we would have to download pictures and then add them to the server and then add them to the report after that. It was all very time consuming with multiple steps involved. Now, with the app, we’ve streamlined all of it. It’s quick and easy.”
And customers are happy, too, Ribault adds. They feel better informed as they are kept in the loop of problems, should they arise. At the end of the day, problems can’t always be avoided, but Ribault says how you handle them can make all the difference.
He adds: “We believe very strongly in good communication with our clients and we feel that being good at it is something that sets us apart from the competition.”
Our Like a Boss series highlights some common business challenges landscape professionals face and how they conquer them.