Building Great Client/Contractor Relationships — A 5 Step Guide for Clients

November 11, 2008

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Building a long-standing relationship with your commercial painting company can pay off big time. Here are five important tips to keep your relationship open, honest and good for you and good for your business.

Step 1: Share Your Priorities

Share your priorities with your commercial painting company contractor. Communication is essential to building long lasting business relationships. Your contractor can’t read your mind. You need to lay out your priorities, objectives and expectations as precisely as you can – as early as you can in the painting process. Don’t worry if things come up – just make sure to communicate why and how they need to be changed or fixed and how that should impact the painting contractor’s process.

Step 2: Negotiate Terms and Listen

A commercial painting company contractor can be a great planning resource. A painting contractor may be able suggest an otherwise overlooked solution to a difficult commercial painting project. Treat your contractor as an interested partner by soliciting opinions, listening to his or her recommendations, and adjusting your expectations and budget (if possible) to accommodate needs.

Step 3: Make a Written Contract

Establish a written detailed contract with the commercial painting company before the contractor preps a single surface or spray paints a single girder. Contracts help to clearly define the business relationship and – in a sense – liberate it. If you and your contractor are not clear on the terms of your mutual arrangement, it’s easy for frustrations and bad feelings to spoil a working relationship.

Step 4: Touch Base Often

Schedule regular meetings to discuss progress. By putting a meeting on the calendar, you and your contractor commit to maintaining an ongoing dialog. Ongoing communications as a project develops is absolutely essential to maintaining a good working relationship. These meetings do not need to take very long, nor do they need to be face to face. Figure on fifteen minutes a week for a routine progress meeting. Follow-up your meeting with an email to the contractor to clarify any significant issues.

Step 5: Trust Experience

Your commercial painting company contractor should know his or her business. Once you have found a painting company with the experience that your facility needs, stand back and let them take care of your projects. Trust your contractor’s experience.

Looking Ahead

Like a personal relationship, a business relationship evolves over time. Periodically review your relationships with contracting firms and outsourcing organizations and discover if there are areas that need touching up and improvement.

Questions or comments?

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