31 May 2018

Creating win-win solutions for vendors and clients

Source: Bloem. A flower arrangement picked to match the colour scheme of the room.
Source: Bloem. A flower arrangement designed to match
the colour scheme of the room at Park Hotel, Farrer Park
 and convey the elegance of the surroundings.
Today’s customers are even more difficult to manage than ever before, but you cannot expect them to change. This was the message that creative consultancy Bloem's founder and CEO Sukri Kadola had for his audience at a showcase titled Confessions of a Perfectionist and how he tamed the Bridezilla and other impossible customers.

At the event on 30 May he explained: "Customers have higher expectations of bespoke services, demanding more customised services that tailor to their whim and fancy. The onus is on the vendors, like us, to educate the client and mitigate situations not only in their best interest but in a way that considers the bottom line.

"Essentially, it is about consulting the client and patiently taking them through the process of producing the desired result and highlighting the challenges. It is at the end of the day, about communication, to be able to signal pitfalls early and to consider practical alternatives."

Source: Bloem. Kadola (centre) acting in a skit to dramatise a  call with a difficult customer.
Source: Bloem. Kadola (centre) acting in a skit to dramatise a
call with a difficult customer. "The audience gets to listen
on both ends of the call - and what it’s like in a typical
day answering enquiries from customers with specific
and detailed requests. We get quite a lot of that," he said.
Bloem counts brides as well as corporate clients in its customer base. Kadola explained that addressing the needs of a client is very important.

When it came to providing flowers for Park Hotel, Farrer Park, a new hotel, Kadola said, "We needed to understand their space, how traffic flows, the pockets where people meet and socialise. From an aesthetic view, we need to understand the concept of their interior architecture and appreciate the original interior design.

"The design of the building is very much influenced by Art Deco and featured many Art Deco elements such as distinct parallel lines and repeated curves. We needed to appreciate these elements and made sure that the materials we chose matched the bronze and dark steel elements that framed its shiny surfaces and sleek furniture. The colour tones were basically earthy tones. Being a new hotel, we have a chance to set a particular standard or benchmark for the client.

"We chose vessels that had a shiny surface to match the rustic and warm hues in the selection of the blooms. The flowers and presentation style could not look synonymous with any other commercial hotel. We placed emphasis on originality, form and artistic interpretation in the overall execution. A lot of thought went into putting into producing something that challenges convention - and this we felt was an important competitive edge for Bloem."
Source: Bloem. An arrangement for Chinese
New Year
at Park Hotel, Farrer Park.

Aside from decorating the public spaces weekly, Bloem managed the decorations for three corporate events, a wedding, and festive events such as Deepavali, Chinese New Year and Easter for Blue Jasmine, the restaurant at the hotel. The company also works with other restaurants, banks and healthcare firms.

Bloem is also focused on conducting workshops for the Foreign Domestic Worker Association for Social Support and Training (FAST), which it had announced during its 4th anniversary event. "We just launched a four-module creative course in floral arrangement just last weekend - 22 maids have signed up across the next three months," Kadola said.

Bloem's personal concierge service also went live on the 30th. The pilot programme alerts customers on important dates such as birthdays and anniversaries, so they never miss an important event. Thirty customers are already in the programme.

Source: Bloem. A focal flower arrangement for the Year of the Dog at Park Hotel, Farrer Park.
Source: Bloem. A focal flower arrangement for the Year of the Dog at Park Hotel, Farrer Park.


Read about Bloem's 4th anniversary announcements in WorkSmart Asia