One of the key elements of managing emotional intelligence during times of crisis, such as we are experiencing now with COVID-19, is through the efficiency of your communication. This is particularly important when it comes to your dealings with your clients. By focusing on the who, what, how, and why of your communication process, you can be confident that your messaging will set the framework for improved client relationships both now and after the COVID-19 crisis has passed.
First the ‘who’ in the equation. Every client, regardless of portfolio size, deserves outreach at this time. I delve into this in great detail during my podcast episode “Talk To Me – Are You Communicating Effectively During The COVID-19 Crisis”. All of your clients have trusted you with their money and their future. That carries with it responsibility and in times such is these it is important every last client hears from you.
The ‘what’ to communicate does become a bit trickier and will necessarily vary from client to client. Beginning your communications by checking on your client and their family with sincerity is one of the most advisable things to do at this time. The answers the client gives to this question – from concerns about health to the security of their employment – will provide valuable insight into the guidance you may give as it relates to their portfolio. Further, given current market volatility, it is important during your client communications to remind them of the overall process of how you manage their financial portfolio, something I provide in-depth ideas for in my podcast episode “Process Over Percentage – What Keeps Your Business Up When Markets Are Down”.
When it comes to ‘how’ you will communicate with your clients, effective communication may not necessarily mean a phone call. It may be more prudent to send personalized emails via your CRM first and request to schedule a phone call when and if it is convenient for your customer. Not every client may respond to your outreach. Additionally, some may need lengthy conversations while other clients require a quick answer to an email. It is important not to read to much into these details given the varying degrees to which the COVID-19 crisis is effecting each individual. The important thing to focus on is making the communication outreach to your client in the first place.
And lastly keep in mind your ‘why’. Remember it is not the communication itself but letting your client know you are here, available, and on task for them which is most vital. For it is the people and companies who are there for all of us now, during the COVID-19 crisis, that we will all most certainly continue to give our business too after this crisis has passed.