Great movie. Great concept. In the movie (Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde), Dr Jekyll, the Good Guy, drinks a potion and changes into the Bad Guy, Mr Hyde. A really nice guy turns into a monster. This concept can be used very effectively when chasing slow payments.
1.Start the collection process early (apply Principle #1)
2. Be pleasant, extraordinarily, sickeningly pleasant when contacting customers with overdue accounts (apply Principle #2). This establishes an excellent rapport with clients whose accounts are only just overdue, and
3. If an account still remains unpaid after several follow ups, act as if you have drunk such a potion and slowly change into Mr Hyde!
In other words, the creditor should moderate their approach to the debtor. As the debt remains unpaid and gets older and older, the creditor becomes less and less amiable and more and more businesslike. Eventually becoming more assertive in their demands for payment. The friendliness disappears, it is treated as a straight business relationship.
This strategy can be extremely effective if applied to all staff that deal with clients with overdue accounts. I am not suggesting that such debtors are given the cold-shoulder treatment. I am suggesting that the change from an extremely friendly and helpful approach to a colder and purely business-like approach often has a significant impact on most debtors. No-one likes to lose friends – even if they are business-based.
How would you react?
If it would affect you, then it will affect your debtors just as much.
- Start following up overdue accounts as soon as practically possible to give yourself time to change into Mr Hyde.
- Be extremely pleasant when following up the accounts that are just overdue. In that way, the contrast between your Dr Jekyll and your Mr Hyde is much more noticeable to the debtor and a much stronger impact on them.