You know how easily you connect with some of your spa and massage practice clients. From the first time you meet you have an instant rapport. The connection may stem from finding humor in the same thing or being ‘on the same page’ an issue. Whatever the reason you click from that point forward the bond just seems to grow.
Just because you don’t immediately connect with someone, however, doesn’t mean you can’t build a rapport over time. There are several things you can do to build a connection with your clients that helps you better understand their needs and makes your time together so much more enjoyable. Here are some things to keep in mind.
Appear approachable:. Whenever someone walks through the door of your spa or massage practice, smile and welcome them with a greeting. Particularly if your client is having a bad day, your open and warm reception will help to break the ice.
Use someone’s first name: It may seem simple enough, but a conversation takes on a whole new level of familiarity when you address someone using their name. You don’t want to overdo it, though. During a session as you speak with your client interject their name at appropriate times.
Share something personal: People find it a lot easier to open up to you when you are open with them. By sharing something about your day, an experience you had at home or something personal, you give people permission to open up about themselves. In most cases they will and it can be the start of building a relationship.
Ask questions: In addition to asking the necessary questions about your client’s health, pain or discomfort for the purpose of a providing the appropriate massage or questions about their skin condition if the session is a skin treatment, ask questions about them. People love it when you show an interest in their work, their family, travel, hobbies, volunteer activities and so forth. When you ask questions, you also learn more about your client – their likes and dislikes, expectations or worries - and that helps to serve their needs better in the long run.
Listen: Actively listen to your clients. Show you are interested in what they are saying by the expression on your face and your body language. Respond to what they are saying with comments and questions to assure them you are listening.
Offer a compliment: Everyone loves a compliment. The key is to be sincere. A compliment shows your interest in the other person and also conveys your generosity of spirit.
Also remember that no two clients are alike. What may work with one client, may not with another. Set out to build a bond and try different things to put your client at ease. Building a rapport is also about building trust and that can take time.