Project management is as much about completing a task to the best of your ability as it is about improving on your business’s ability to meet the needs of its consumer base.
Your business can’t improve, though, if you don’t take stock of your previous clients’ opinions of your work.
Obtaining client feedback, though, can be a little difficult if you don’t maintain a relationship with your clients.
As such, it’s important to get client feedback early on your relationship with them, enabling you and your team of employees to improve your work methods before a project is delivered on.
If you’re interested in better integrating client feedback into your daily work, then think about the ways you can communicate with your clients more effectively over the course of a project.
Get Feedback Early On
If you want to improve as a project manager, you need to early feedback from your client.
You need to decide, then, both how and when to get that feedback. It’s recommended that you wait until you’ve introduced your client to their project team. Alternatively, speak with your client after you’ve delivered on the first element of your project. This way, the information you gather will be immediate relevant and suitable for future implementation.
In general, any email that has an attachment that you want your client to look at is an opportunity to ask for feedback. This feedback can be limited to your communication regarding the deliverable or on your team’s compliance with the client’s standards. At this point, you, the client, and your team can exchange notes and ensure that there aren’t any misunderstandings in what’s expected of anyone working on the project.
In order to get frequent feedback, you’ll also want to check in with your client frequently. Don’t overwhelm them with emails, of course. Try to send one email a week asking for an overview. You can then send appropriate responses as necessary to keep your client up to date on your progress.
Make sure, in these emails, that the work you’re doing is the work they’re expecting. If it isn’t, how are your methods different from the ones your client is used to? Are they better? How can you improve? Questions like these offer you actionable ways to integrate client feedback into your work.
These in-person meetings will remind you both that you’re working with a real person. So: set a coffee date and ask your client about your work ethic. Listen to what they have to say about the way you work.
There are two benefits to having this feedback given in person. For one, your client is more likely to be frank with you. Secondly, that feedback will be easier to interpret when you can see your client’s facial reactions. We all know the way tone gets lost in emails.
These in-person check-ins will make sure you don’t misunderstand what your client is trying to say.
Share Your Resources
In order to ensure that your client can easily give you feedback outside of check-ins, you’ll want to do what you can to use software that’s accessible to the whole of your team and that your client can view, either when meeting with you or from their own office.
Obviously, you’ll want to institute boundaries with your client. However, ensuring that your client has a strong understanding of your schedule, goals, and any obstacles that arise will make their feedback – once asked for – more applicable.
Encourage Client Reviews
Finally, once a partnership has concluded and all of your goods have been delivered, provide your client with the opportunity to review your work together.
This review can be presented either in the form of a survey, which will allow for more empirical data to be gathered, or a looser review. You can prompt your client with questions, such as “was the team timely in the delivery of updates?” or “how well do you feel your ideas and input were integrated into the task at hand?”
Partner these with an overall review of your work together, and you and your client can not only improve the way you work on any projects to come, but you can build up a portfolio of reviews for your website that other potential clients can view at their leisure.
Not only will your previous client’s feedback allow your business to operate more efficiently. You can use said feedback to encourage your consumer base to reach out to you in the future.
Integrating a client’s feedback into your business operations is only as difficult as you make it. Give your clients the opportunity to help you improve your work, and you’ll find yourself in a better position to help and attract additional customers in the future.