In a customer facing role we encounter a variety of personalities and communication styles. People think, react and behave in various ways depending on their personality. We found that although there are many layers to ones personality, we can be grouped into four main types of customer behavior.
Driver (or Director): Drivers don’t have time to wait and are easily annoyed by small talk and banter. They don’t want to tell you about their day and are usually identified by their impatient looks, tapping feet, and constant checking of their watch. They want what they want when they want it – and they want it now! In extreme cases they can be intimidating know-it-all’s. Their goals are very clear. They want the best possible product at the lowest possible price delivered when they want it – which is usually immediately. Get down to business with these people. Take their order and let them get on with their lives.
Socializers: These customers love people, are quick to smile, and don’t mind spending a few minutes in conversation with you about the weather, sports or life. They have a strong need to feel part of a group and take an ownership position in anything they do. They love to be asked their opinion because they like to feel part of the decision-making process. They like to build relationships and are an excellent referral source. These people are usually three calls away from getting anything they want. They always know someone who knows someone who knows someone – the classic example of “three degrees of separation.” It could be the best product at the best price but the Socializer won’t do business with you if they don’t like you. Use compliments liberally. Do whatever you have to do to remember the names of these people.
Ambiables: These customers are not assertive but they are responsive and emotionally expressive. They are dependent on others, respectful, willing and agreeable. They are low risk takers and like security. They like personal assurance, specific guarantees, low risk, and don’t want to hear a lot of options. They can be over sensitive so when they speak, listen or risk alienating them. Don’t take advantage of their good nature. Work jointly with them to seek a common ground.
Analytical: Similar to the Action personality, these people don’t like chit-chat, but unlike all others, these customers are very specific about what they want. These types usually have professions that require accuracy and analysis. They will explain their problem in a very detailed manner. Sometimes it may seem they’re trying to tell you how to do your job, but they’re not, they just know what they want and don’t want any misunderstandings. Analyticals read manuals, directions and the fine print. Like the Director type they are unaffected by small talk or the niceties that can accompany a “sales” or business meeting. They conduct research and analyze all the possibilities before making a decision and they want data. Give them facts and data and do not make a statement unless you can back it up with pertinent information.
In which customer category do you see yourself? Do you see yourself in more than one category. Let us know in the comments.
If you are an existing customer, contact us if you have not reviewed your policies in the last year. And, if you are not a customer, we’d love the opportunity to earn your business. Here are our business hours.