July 08, 2023

Scaling your business while maintaining a personal touch

We live in an era where relationships matter more than ever. As an entrepreneur, providing a personal touch in your business dealings isn't just nice—it's an essential part of customer relationships.

Unfortunately, as businesses grow, the personal touch tends to get lost in the hustle and bustle of scaling a business. The reasons for this disconnection are multifold:

  1. Rapid expansion can lead to impersonal and generic customer experiences. Think of a mom-and-pop shop that grew into a nationwide chain but lost its charm because the customer no longer feels valued.
  2. The demands of running a larger business can detract from personal interactions. For instance, when an artisan soap maker becomes a major brand, the founder may lose the chance to engage directly with customers at local markets.
  3. Over-reliance on automation tools can strip away the human element. While automated chatbots provide round-the-clock customer service, they lack the empathy and understanding of a human being.
  4. The pressure to continuously increase earnings can sometimes overshadow the importance of maintaining personal relationships, often leading to an unintentional but palpable shift in company priorities.

But don't worry—it's still possible to effectively scale your business without losing the personal touch that got you where you are.

Let's examine how.

Keep communication personal

The first step to maintaining personal touch while scaling is ensuring your business communication remains personal. This goes beyond using a customer's first name in an email (although that totally works).

It's about understanding your customer's journey and communicating in a way that shows you genuinely care. For instance, a clothing retailer might send personalized style recommendations based on a customer's previous purchases. Or, a SaaS company might provide tailored content that helps users get more from their product.

This level of detail goes a long way to making your customers feel seen and appreciated.

Leverage technology (the right way)

Many entrepreneurs stumble with technology, viewing it as a means to eliminate human interaction. But, technology can also enhance personal touch when used thoughtfully.

Using automation to handle routine tasks is fine—but make sure you're investing in technology that improves the customer experience. A CRM is table stakes—tracking customer preferences and interaction history, allowing you to provide personalized service at scale.

Empower your team to make personal connections

Empowering your team is critical to scaling while maintaining a personal touch. Ensure your team understands the value of personal interactions and empower them to make decisions that enhance customer experience.

Provide training to improve their interpersonal skills and foster a culture where every team member feels responsible for maintaining a certain level of accountability and personal touch. Celebrate and reward those who excel in this area to reinforce its importance.

Empowering your team to strive for personal interaction is also good for your bottom line. A Gallup study shows that organizations with high employee engagement scores had 21% higher profitability. Win-win.

Stay true to your brand values

As you scale, remaining true to your brand values is essential. These guiding principles define your business and resonate with your customers.

Whether it's exceptional customer service, a commitment to quality, or a focus on sustainability, staying true to your values communicates authenticity.

Authentic brands cultivate loyal customers, which is crucial for sustainable growth.

In conclusion

Scaling your business without losing the personal touch isn't just possible—it's essential in today's business landscape. Remember, no matter how much your business grows, personal connections make customers feel valued and keep them coming back.

This famous quote by Maya Angelou sums things up perfectly: "People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel."