Looking for a great way to get out with a customer, but you don’t golf? Why not take them four wheeling!
That’s right: Get away with a customer or prospect for some quality one-on-one time. While it requires a bit more planning than a round of golf, a trek into the back country could prove to be quite the experience.
No need to limit yourself to customers, either. Think vendors (suppliers), prospects and employees. You can use an off-road jaunt as part of a team-building exercise or as a reward for your sales staff. You and your staff could have a lot of fun with this. How many businesses let their employees go romping on the trails as a reward for a job well done?
You see, it’s all about building and maintaining those relationships. An off-road excursion, if even for just a couple hours, provides that valuable one-on-one time. Your guest(s) come away with some pretty amazing memories.
Taking your guests four wheeling
There are some details to consider. First, of course, is the difficulty of the ride. Bear in mind that, unlike you, your guest may have little or no off-road driving experience. Plan a more leisurely ride. Make your goal some destination (as opposed to the drive itself). For example, you may decide to visit an old mine, check out a ghost town, do some fishing, or just go out for a ride and a picnic. Ideally, select a place that your guests haven’t or couldn’t visit on their own.
Which is why it helps to know your guests’ interests. What have you learned about them over the years? Use that information to determine the destination(s) and activities.
Try to enlist a second driver. You should always head out with at least one other vehicle. For this exercise, the second driver could transport other customers or employees. To maximize face time with each guest, you and the other driver could switch passengers during some predetermined moment, say lunchtime.
Let your guests drive if they want to (and you feel confident). Make sure you keep your eyes on the trail while you chat, especially if you’re in difficult terrain.
Remember to pack your vehicle accordingly. This will include recovery gear, first aid kit, communications equipment, food, water and such.
Start simple. You can always enhance the program as you gain experience (and confidence) doing this. Have fun with this. In fact, that’s the point. Too often contacts with customers, employees and others are on a serious basis. Going off road allows all of you to let your hair down a bit.
Take a few moments now to sketch out some ideas. Consider who you’d like to take and where you’ll go. Then make those calls. Over time this could turn into something really big for you and your organization. Go for it!