Know Your Clients

Jan 03, 2011

Press Release: January 3, 2011 Experts are saying that constantly tracking client needs and wants and delivering relevant products is the secret for success in 2011 and beyond. Mike Phillips, a client feedback expert for the industry, told the Jan. 3 issue of The Zweig Letter that only about 5% of firms regularly collect meaningful feedback from clients. Also: when they approach clients, they often don’t do it frequently enough. They may ask the wrong questions and only try to collect feedback after a project is over, which equates to a “post mortem,” according to Phillips “We’re very poor at collecting feedback from our clients,” he said, adding that the secret is asking the right questions often enough. Phillips has developed and sells a hugely successful client feedback tool called DesignFacilitator, which has already collected data from 33,000 client respondents. “You’re looking for feedback that will let you fine-tune your process with each particular client to make your firm the most valuable to that client,” said Phillips, who is also the president of Phillips Architecture in Raleigh, NC. “The clients are ready to give feedback if that feedback will help you do a better job in your project.” One industry practitioner said collecting constant feedback has proven essential for his firm. “We use the feedback to help define company improvement opportunities and added value, as such it is improvement to follow-up and communicate the improvement opportunities to the individuals who provided feedback,” said John Brand, president of Butler, Fairman and Seufert (BF&S) a civil engineering firm in Merrillville, IN. “We view the client feedback as a gift to our firm on how to improve,” he said. About ZweigWhite: ZweigWhite is the nation's leader in enhancing business performance for architecture, engineering, planning, and environmental consulting firms. The ZweigWhite team consists of experts in strategy, mergers and acquisitions, business valuation, ownership transition, human resources management, finance, marketing, market research, project management and project delivery methods who collectively produce a comprehensive suite of products and services, including advisory, consulting, newsletters, industry reports, executive training, business conferences, and more covering virtually every aspect of firm management. The firm is headquartered in Fayetteville, Arkansas, with additional offices in, Chicago, IL, Durham, NC, and Natick, MA. The ownership of ZweigWhite are investors Eli Global, BIA Digital Partners and Mark Zweig, with management including Mark Zweig and Ed Friedrichs. For more information contact Sonya Stout at 479.582.5700, or ###

About Zweig Group

Zweig Group, three times on the Inc. 500/5000 list, is the industry leader and premiere authority in AEC firm management and marketing, the go-to source for data and research, and the leading provider of customized learning and training. Zweig Group exists to help AEC firms succeed in a complicated and challenging marketplace through services that include: Mergers & Acquisitions, Strategic Planning, Valuation, Executive Search, Board of Director Services, Ownership Transition, Marketing & Branding, and Business Development Training. The firm has offices in Dallas and Fayetteville, Arkansas.