How to know how much is enough to deliver to our clients?
Have you ever experienced that the clients are not happy with what you deliver even if you give more than what they ask for?
Many times clients fire us and show us the exit door. Many times, we have to fire the clients but we don’t do.
How to know what they want from us?
So that both you and your clients can enjoy the professional relationship. Find out in this short podcast episode.
A few years ago, I was abruptly got ‘fired’ from a business.
I was helping them to get the marketing and sales message. It was consulting work. I worked with their team for a while. It was good but something happened unexpectedly. I wasn’t happy about being fired.
But, there was an important lesson I learned.
I gave them the entire structure and system to create a marketing message. Before I joined, It was difficult for them to sell their products. They also asked me to provide support for their other products. I helped them out and told them what is really good about their product and what is needed to improve.
They needed to change their product a little bit.
After looking at the features and benefits of the product, I suggested their team to improve their features. It wasn’t a major change. It required a minor tweak in their marketing message. The head of the marketing department and other members agreed with me. It was long work but it was good. We tasted and we got a good response.
But the owner wasn’t happy with it.
He didn’t like the idea. Even if my idea was better. We tested and got a better response from the market. I found a better idea but not exactly the way he wanted.
As a result, he removed me from the project.
I was helping them out. On the last day, he told me that I haven’t done enough research on the product. In fact, after a small tweak, their customers responded better than before. The message that I helped them to create was impactful. Previously, they spent too much money on advertising and social media marketing. And, I saved their money on digital marketing and showed them how to sell without wasting money on advertising.
It didn’t matter for them.
He was quite obsessed with fancy ads and social media posts that showcase his products on social media. Even if it was not delivering any good result. I have saved his money and time but it wasn’t in the way he wanted.
In his eyes, I have failed.
Some other consultant told him that the only way to reach more customer is to spend more and more money on marketing, PR and advertising. So, I was shown the exit door. I was sad. I kept wondering what I did wrong! Finally, I found the answer. In this short podcast, let me share with you one of the most important lessons I wish I had learned earlier. Let’s find out.
One day, I was listening to an audiobook in my car.
At one point in time, the author said something about value. Value is in the eye of the beholder. It doesn’t matter what value I perceive I bring to a relationship, whether it’s personal or business. What matters is what the other person in the relationship sees as bringing value.
We don’t look at something in the same way.
Some look at Apple’s products as over-expensive products whereas some people look at it as something cool and outstanding products. No one is right or wrong. It’s just the way we perceive.
We sometimes get so excited to help people where we don’t need to.
I did the same mistake a few times. If I don’t deliver what the other person believes they need, regardless of what other things I do, then I am not providing them with any value. When you next talk to a business client, ask them for some feedback on how much value they expect you bringing to them. The answer may surprise you.
We don’t need to serve every single client.
We don’t need to be too hard on ourself. Sometimes clients are just not worth it. In many cases, we end up working with the worst clients. We might come up with the exact solution they are looking for but I guarantee they would complain about why we hadn’t done anything. It’s good to remove them.
Many times our clients don’t want us to help them.
Yes, it’s true. I met some clients who look for validation. It means, they just want to get the approval of what they believe is right. If our practice or philosophy doesn’t match with them, they would see us as an enemy.
It’s sad to lose a client.
But it seems like every time I lose a difficult student a better one shows up. I think it is important not to get into a mindset of scarcity when it comes to clients. There are hundreds of people you can choose as your clients.
Ultimately, you and your client should enjoy a professional relationship.
You need to get to decide what kind of product or service you want to deliver and who you want to work with. Business is all about serving with someone you can enjoy working with. You can’t give value to someone who doesn’t understand it.
So, there are two things you learn from this short podcast.
- We need to know what ‘value’ is desired by our clients. We need to know exactly what our customers want. And deliver what they want.
- We need to decide that sometimes what they require and what we get joy from providing, do not line up.
That takes us almost to the end of the podcast. Lastly, I would like to share my personal experience. It’s something that from my own life.
Two years ago, my wife, Dhruvi, was looking at some of our old photographs on my computer.
She wanted to print some of the photos she liked. She was too busy to get those photos printed. So, I offered her my support. I decided to print for her. I even did something extra. After getting all those photos printed, I bought a very good photobook and put all photos in. I also put some photos that I thought she would like.
I wanted to make my wife, Dhruvi, happy. But she wasn’t.
No. She was not happy. She just wanted photos. And the photos that she chose. She didn’t want more photos that I thought she would like. She didn’t want photobook. She took those photos out of the photobook and gave that empty photobook back to me along with the photos that I chose.
I was a little bit upset.
I spent so much time and put extra efforts to make it look good. After all, I wanted to surprise her and make her happy. But I understood that she was also right. It was her choice, not mine.
I was overjoyed to do the work the way I wanted to, not the way she wanted me to do. I didn’t pay attention to what she wants. That’s the good lesson I learned.
Read next: Ever wondered how do we get tired? What if you know how to get motivated even if we feel like we can’t do more things.
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