“Business would be so much fun if it weren’t for my clients!”
Said “tongue in cheek”, I often hear business owners complaining about their clients.
It is generally due to clients making huge demands.
Those demands may be around time, deadlines, work outside of the original scope, discounts, reduced fees, or simply wanting your expertise for free.
And when you meet those demands what is the result?
- It may be the unreasonable expectations going forward: “You did this last time, why not again?”
- You are likely to start burning out: This results in less than satisfactory results for them and you.
- And the worst: is simply not looking forward to engaging with your client.
As a small business owner, you are likely to be driven because you love what you do.
Demanding clients can be a real “happiness killer” and could ultimately cost you your sanity, reputation, and possibly losing the passion you have for your business.
Before we figure out HOW to fix it, lets understand WHY it happens!
- You want your clients to be happy with your service.
- Perhaps when you started out you had more time and energy to spend on each client as you didn’t have as many.
- You believe that by meeting their demands you will receive more referrals from them.
- It’s hard to say no.
- You enjoy your client and WANT to add more value.
- You are afraid of losing your clients.
The reality is, it is an avoidable situation and if you really delve into it, is often you, as the business owner, who has allowed it to happen by not setting fair and reasonable expectations of them.
How can you avoid this?
Have clarity and document what you offer:
- How often will the service be provided?
- What is included?
- What isn’t included?
It is essential that your client knows, from the outset, what you need from them in order to meet those expectations:
- What do they need to provide you with for the service to be rendered?
- When do you need the information in order for the services to be rendered?
What is the result?
With clear communication, expectations and the acceptance of accountability from both parties there are 3 outcomes:
- Greater client satisfaction
- Increased level of trust
- A productive and positive business relationship.
And that…….. leads to a happier you and a happier them!
It may be a case of “Business would be so much fun if it weren’t for my clients”, but you and I both know…. If there were no clients there were be no business.
If you are ready to work with a Business Accountability Mentor who will guide, mentor and support you on gaining clarity on your and your client’s expectations, and save your sanity, I would love you to reach out and engage with me.