Communicating in person or by phone is not fun when you are talking to a client about a issue with their horse but it is much needed. I believe texting is not the place to share news of a horse that is hurt or other negative problems. I am finding more and more people will text these kind of messages because they don't want to talk face to face. They don't do well with confrontation and it is so much easier when you don't have to see the persons face or hear their reply on the phone.
The most important thing I am going to say is, to be an effective and successful barn owner, manager or trainer you need to learn to communicate and handle conflict under all circumstances in person or on the phone. Your clients deserve this and it shows them that you are giving them respect. Even if they don't like what you are saying the fact that you gave them the courtesy of talking with them in person is something that they can't deny. Less and less people talk in person anymore and we are losing those important skills of handling conflict and resolving problems.
To be an effective and successful barn owner, manager or trainer you need to learn to communicate and handle conflict under all circumstances in person or on the phone.
I am going to admit right now that I have made the big mistake of texting a boarder about bad news with their horse and the results were not good. Eventually I had to get on the phone and fix the situation. Never again. What was a small injury to me was larger than life on the other end for the person who received my text. If I would have made the phone call in the first place I would have saved much stress on both my boarder and myself.
I encourage you if you are a barn manager or run your own facility to save the texting for general purpose business and when something comes up that needs to be addressed use the phone or in person. It is never easy but you might be pleasantly surprised how the end results will save you much time and stress. Also more importantly I believe your clients will appreciate it so much more and they will feel that you respect them enough to talk with them in person.
I watch these young kids texting all day long and I have even watched them trying to resolve conflicts via texting. They don't want to talk in person because it is more difficult but they are missing out on learning the much needed skills of how to deal with conflict and how to fix problems that come up in life. This will transfer into their adult life and into their work.
I believe one of the most important qualities a good barn manager can have is good communication skills. They might be very good with horses and have a degree in equine science but if they don't know how to communicate and resolve conflict they can really hurt a horse business if they are the person the boarders or clients need to talk with when problems come up.
If you have a horse business and have a large client base then there will times when conflict will come up. Are you ready to handle it? I will say it was hard for me at first and I was not prepared for all the different personalities in our barn. There were many times over the years when I had to leave my home and walk out to the barn and into an uncomfortable conversation. I believe each time was a learning experience for me and it helped me grow into a business owner and a much more confident person.
Learning to run a horse business and becoming a successful business person takes time and even guts now and then. It is not easy dealing with all that can come up in a business but if you stick with it, eventually the tough issues will become easier to handle and each experience will give you wisdom to handle the next one. It will truly change you and your business for the better.
Texting is great and I use it everyday. I encourage you to think twice before you text your client about something that might upset them. Make that call instead. I know you will be glad you did.
If you are new to my blog, then welcome! If you are feeling the stress of issues or growing pains at your barn, I encourage you to check out my newest book, "The Total Horse Barn Management Makeover." I will give you practical business wisdom from someone who has made many mistakes along the way and turned a struggling boarding facility into a healthy barn with clients that have made it their home. You won't find another book that talks about the real life struggles that barns owners and managers go through while running a business and this book will give you the tools to make the changes you want to make and move forward. I believe this book will inspire you in more ways than you could imagine.
I wish you the very best in your horse endeavors,