Our Client Management Team, as well as the rest of Professional Advantage (PA), embraced remote working when it was thrust upon them in 2020.
Since then, there have been many changes and adaptations in the way we work and connect with both our team members and clients.
A member of our Client Management Team has shared their experience of working remotely and the benefits they have experienced.
From a Client Success Manager at Professional Advantage:
It is within our human nature to feel connected to one another and connect in person; that is the way it has always been. We are taught, and we normally feel, that in-person interactions are always more effective than connecting on the phone or via message. But what happens when the world throws a curve ball at you and tells you this is not allowed?
I was lucky enough to start with PA in early November 2019 which meant I was able to meet most of my clients face-to-face in the 4.5 months before COVID and subsequent lockdowns hit. The ability to connect like this helped me a lot in my initial months, and I am grateful for having that time.
When I reflect on how lockdowns and remote working has affected my role as a Client Success Manager, a few negatives come to mind. Suddenly I was no longer able to meet my clients face to face and engage with them, not only with the words they were saying but also their body language and mannerisms. It is harder to read people on the phone just by their tone and words, or see only their face on a Teams video call. When meeting in person, we pick up a lot of communication and cues that are non-verbal.
But whilst there are a couple of negatives, what I wanted to focus on today are the positives.
When you are going out to meet clients in person, you are typically only able to engage with a few in one day; between travelling to sites and having meetings, you are not afforded too much spare time in between. In the era of COVID working, I have been very lucky to engage and connect with more of my clients on any given day and answer any of their questions or concerns. I can typically have a meeting with a client within the same day they request it. I’ve had the pleasure of connecting with them more regularly, and also the flexibility to have them call, text, or ping me on Teams. I have been able to reply quicker, and if I don’t know something, I also have the flexibility to reach out to my colleagues in the same manner (calls, texts, or Teams) for swift answers and assistance. I like the more casual nature and the flexibility: I like that my clients feel comfortable enough to ping me on Teams or call me directly to ask something.
I enjoy being connected more efficiently and effectively, meaning fewer emails and quicker response times. This has significantly improved collaboration and communication between my clients and I, but also my colleagues; it has become more than just a chat; it has become the new way of working. On some occasions, and with everyone’s permission, I’ve also been able to record meetings. This has many benefits such as being able to relay the correct information to someone technical for assistance or, if it is a demo or training for a client, sharing the recording with them for later viewing or for sharing with other colleagues. It also allows me to be more present in a meeting without the constant worry of recording everything.
Whilst I do miss the client catch-ups, travelling to their sites, seeing the different work environments, and generally getting out and about more, I am grateful that I have been able to support my clients more effectively and effectively through remote working.