The Sherpa Model
The Sherpa is a model of serving clients and prospects that is like no other. The Sherpa is a native people in Nepal. The Sherpa is also a guide for the thousands of adventure seekers who have attempted to climb Mount Everest. Their livelihood depends on planning and executing a strategy to get their clients to the summit of Everest, if at all possible, but also bring them back down the mountain alive. The ever- shifting winds, the potential for fatal snow accumulation and the threat of avalanches offer peril at every turn. The Sherpa knows the mountain and they know the dangers. Their meticulous planning and educating their clients as well as understanding the clients’ strengths and weaknesses allow them to offer the very best advice to all experience levels of climbers. Sherpas have died on the mountain trying to protect their clients. They know that their reputations are essentials bonds of trust for their clients and for their businesses.
The Sherpa Model is sacrificial. Its power is found in its transparency. If I help my clients and prospects reach their goals, I will most assuredly reach mine. The mindset needs to be heartfelt and refined so that each person in an organization that has contact with the customer understands the process. The letters in Sherpa stand for:
Solutions Based – We want to build trust through listening and developing a plan that addresses the needs of the client and then determine if we have the right solution.
Honest – Sometimes telling a client that we do not have the right solution or we are not the right provider is very difficult. However, it is essential in the Sherpa Model.
Empathetic – Caring about the client and their needs can be the deciding factor in building long-term trust and growing relationships. Clients and prospects know if you truly care or if you are going through the motions.
Responsive – When a client or prospect calls or emails us with questions or concerns our response can mean everything. This is where empathy and honesty are vital.
Passionate – Do we know our products and services? Do we do the research on the industry? Do we research our clients and prospects businesses? Do we put in the time to really serve the needs of our clients?
Appreciative – Do we really appreciate our clients? If we follow the example of the Sherpa, we will help our clients get to the summit and back and our business will grow.