This hiring manager wants to know how much you value the relationship with your customer base. Your customer base is your profit margin. Knowing how the relationship between the company and its patrons works means you know how the business makes money.
If you don't understand how your employer handles the relationships it maintains with its clients, you don't necessarily understand the company. Most businesses value the relationship with their customer as the heart of their success and they want to be reassured in knowing that you feel the same.
Points to Emphasize
Stressing certain parts of your skillset to match what your potential employer is looking for can be the difference between you getting a second interview or not.
- Engage with your interviewer about how your traits as a person or employee could enrich their relationship with the customer.
- Discuss a time in a previous job where you put the customer's needs first over what was easy or beneficial to your time and schedule.
- Provide any relevant experience you have in customer service.
- Demonstrate a clear understanding of where the client or patron fits in regards to the overall goals and outlook of a business.
Instilling a clear interpretation of this relationship is key in getting a hiring manager to remember you.
Mistakes to Avoid
This question can be difficult when it comes to understanding exactly the type of answer your interviewer is looking for. No matter what that response might be, there are always a few answers you can avoid.
- Be careful not to sound impatient. Staying flexible with a customer is imperative.
- Don't let the relationship seem unimportant. Make the bond sound personal
- Talking about yourself too much isn't good for this answer. Focus on the customer and their needs.
- Never underestimate the customer. Without them there is no business.
Be selfless here. Your future boss wants to know that you place a high standard on this relationship. Put them before you.
A quality and well-thought-out answer to this question might sound like:
The customer provides the basis for the entire business. While the company might provide a good or service, without "them" there is no "us." I believe the purchaser is as important as the product itself. It's a mutual relationship but a humbling one in that they might depend on our service, but they don't depend on our brand. As a company, we want them to depend on our brand.
Sounding genuine and using the right language is key in portraying your understanding of the customer relationship in the best way possible.