The Value of Your Vision
One of the hardest things you will ever do in business and life is saying goodbye. Whether due to an untimely death or a break-up, it’s never easy. Especially when the person you need to say goodbye to is your client.
As we kick off a new year take an honest look at every client and what you are investing in working with them. This isn’t just about the monetary payoff but also about growth; theirs and yours. Unsuccessful or unmotivated clients can affect your other clients, your reputation, brand, and confidence. You will need to decide if keeping the money is worth keeping the negativity which is like a death in the workplace and nothing can thrive or survive while hanging on to death. A houseplant nor a business can flourish until the branches failing to grow are pruned.
While some feel if a client isn't succeeding it's the fault of the professional which isn't entirely true. As the saying goes, you can lead a horse to water, but you can't force him to drink. When you consider how many people pay for a fitness trainer but are still out of shape, it’s because they don't follow the advice they solicited and pay for. Or that the Surgeon General has a warning label on every pack of cigarettes that they cause lung cancer and heart disease. Yet according to the Centers for Disease Control, 249 billion cigarettes were sold nationwide in 2017. We are a society full of people who do not follow advice even when backed by knowledge and experience.
Clients often forget that their success is a partnership between themselves and the professionals they hire, and the pros are in charge.
When I see my hairstylist, I tell him what I want he makes his recommendations, and I let him do his thing. I don't question every snip along the way or spend the next 6 weeks washing my hair with dish soap and expect to look like J-Lo in the end. So if a client is going rogue or not following your recommendations, it's clear they do not respect your vision, knowledge, and time.
As an entrepreneur, time is your most valuable commodity and if you are spending endless hours defending or debating your decisions, dealing with a client who is more interested in monitoring their competition's growth versus investing into their own you have two choices, continue to evaluate or evacuate.
Sit down with your client and review the recommendations you made and review the ones that weren't followed. If your client is dismissive or doesn't seem to care or respect your professional opinion you need to say goodbye. Any client that continues to pay for advice they don't take or recommendations they won't implement doesn't truly care about the success of their own business so they certainly won't care about yours.
Remember there is value in your vision and one of the reasons you became an entrepreneur was to share that vision, be inspired, and inspire others.
Jody Taylor is a former women's professional football player who also served as the Women's Professional Football League's Media Relations Director for seven years working with 52 teams nationwide and some of the largest media outlets in the nation. After hanging up her cleats she officially launched her own Public Relations, Marketing, and Talent Management firm, Sixty5 Media named after the jersey number she wore her entire football career. Taylor works with clients that range from small businesses to celebrities, recording artist, and professional athletes. Additionally, she serves as the Assistant Editor of What's Up Hollywood, is the lead Correspondent for San Diego's Bolt Report and writes as a guest journalist for five other national publications.