When running an MSP company, communication is key. You need to be able to maintain a good connection with your employees, as mutual respect and being able to understand their issues will raise morale, job satisfaction, and ultimately, efficiency. Customers, in order to trust you and want to continue to work with you, need to know what you can and can’t do for them, and have thorough answers to their questions.
Negotiations and sales are also important areas where clear communication and ability to explain products and services is vital to securing a deal. And keeping lines of communication open between you and your peers allows you to find out about new opportunities, maintain a wide network of business colleagues, and cultivate new collaborations.
It can make the difference between your company succeeding or failing in this very competitive marketplace. If you are worried your skills may not be up to scratch, there are a few ways you can try to improve them.
Listening and Non-Verbal Cues
First of all, listening and being aware of the other person are essential skills to help with communication. If you are just waiting for a gap so you can put your own view across, you probably aren’t paying enough attention to the speaker or what they are saying. You need to really listen to their concerns, making sure you are focused on them with no interruptions. A sympathetic ear makes all the difference to a disgruntled employee or customer and makes them feel valued. Hopefully, you will also be able to remedy their issues, but either way, this is a good first step.
You also need to be aware of body language, yours and theirs. It helps if you can smile and nod to show you understand while maintaining eye contact and reacting to the facial expressions of the person you are speaking to. These may seem obvious, but during a busy day, it can be very easy to be too abrupt and dismissive.
Suggestions for Impromptu Speaking
As part of an MSP company, there can be many occasions when you will be in a situation that calls for some impromptu speaking which is often unpopular. This could be answering questions for customers or being asked to make an off-the-cuff speech, and this is where all the key parts of good communication come into play. You will have to listen to the request that has been made of you to make sure that you fulfill the objective. Also, while you are talking, take note of the replies you receive, along with any body language in case you need to alter your tone or subject matter in some way.
Preparing for potential questions beforehand can make answering them on the fly much easier. Consider the types of questions you could be asked along with a suitable answer, this will help allay nervousness and make you seem more confident during the questioning, which garners trust and reliability.
If you don’t have the opportunity to prepare, you can always prevaricate momentarily to plan your answer. Look briefly as if you are contemplating the problem, take a sip of water if you need to, or even ask the questioner to flesh out their question a bit more. These give you some time to formulate an answer, which can make your replies more considered and worthwhile.
A Little Goes a Long Way
As you can see, it only takes small changes to make large differences in your ability to communicate, and the impression you convey while running your MSP company. Communication is such an important skill that by improving it you will be able to have a better relationship with your staff and a more fruitful experience with your customers. In both cases, you should see an improvement in how you learn to recognize possible problems and be able to implement solutions more accurately than before. Try to incorporate some of these suggestions into your business dealings and see how they can work for you.