BuzzShare: Omar Bitar — Understand and be understood
Posted by Hilary Craig on July 25th, 2011
Omar Bitar (@omarbbitar) has spent just over 3 years in the advertising industry in the Brand Navigation department in Dubai, known as Client Services for others. Having spent time working to perfect communication between him, his agency and his everyday clients. His strategy is to treat them as what he calls “Professional Friends.” It is important for him to know who he is talking to and how to speak to them without offending anyone involved. In this edition of BuzzShare, he offers his thoughts on that particular subject.
Below is the piece from Livingroom Communication and Omar’s blog, Not another dinosaur.
I have yet to be exposed to many things in this industry, but if my experience has taught me anything, it is to understand your clients and in turn be understood.
As part of the Brand Navigation team (what others call Client servicing), I truly believe that it is extremely important for myself to get to know my clients as much as possible. From their background, their status, to their personality, every small detail can lead to smoother communication.
Believe it or not, clients too are humans that actually have lives outside of their work, shocking isn’t it. And just like us, their personal life is very much a factor to their mood and behavior. A very small example: statistically, married women with children are the employees with the highest stress levels (it’s a difficult thing to be away from the young ones), so any mood swings from their side does not necessarily reflect bad work from the agency, its simply “one of those days” for them. Knowing this fact can help you relate to what they are going through and in turn decrease the attitude from your side towards them and actually try and make their life slightly easier.
At the end of the day, the relationship between the agency and their client is very much like a normal relationship (at least the beginning of one). Let me elaborate. You meet this special someone, you break the ice, get more comfortable with them, you get to know them better while they would be doing the same thing, and communication gets much easier for both sides.
Up to here, the client-agency relationship is pretty much the same. Making the communication flow easier makes the work-flow easier. At the end of the day, we are all human and we relate to one another and understand the amount of work and stress that comes each other’s way. But in order to do so, we must understand and be understood.