Man is naturally a communicating animal and expresses themselves through communication and sometimes they forget the basis of agreement or the communication may not clear from the beginning and thus can breed friction and contempt.
To avoid this, most importantly for business people, it is important that you communicate clearly and find ways to document your communications as much as possible.
When you have discussed terms of engagement verbally, tell the contact just so we are clear on what we agreed upon right now, am going to send you an email (or a memo or what ever means of communication you can reference in future ) and you can respond to my email by giving me a go ahead or make adjustments.
As an owner of an SME, people may think you mean one think whereas you meant another and in future they can begin to say oh but you didn’t tell me this, when that happens your documents will stand as a reference point as well as reinforcement to save you stress and time you rather spend doing other things other than solving client problems.
Also clear communication shows that you are honest and have nothing to hide.
A few months back I had a friend build a website for me, he showed me a long list of what he was going to do for me and I paid, when the site came half of what he said would do wasn’t done, when I asked he said I didn’t pay for those packages and I said but you told me you were going to do all of those.
Had he sent me an email after our verbal agreement, the friction we had later on would have been avoided.
After that experience I felt he could not be trusted and I took my business away from him, he lost a client something that should never had happened.
Therefore, no matter the size of the business you are running, a one man squad, medium size or a large enterprise, make it a standard practice to document your communications, insist that your customers understand your intensions and you on the other hand must understand their expectations.
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