Let’s face it, we all went in to business because we were really good at something and thought we could do it better. A couple of years later, we have learned some new things and are a little less willing to listen to someone else’s advice. But what if that advice is coming from a client? I recently had a situation where some unwanted advice led to a deeper understanding of my client and their needs. Here’s what I learned.
When they complain, they are telling you what they need.
I recently ran a workshop and when I asked about some areas, I got “I see what you’re saying, but it would have been better if it was specific to what I do”. When I thought about it, they were telling me how to help them. He had a problem and he wanted to know how to solve his problem. Not a theory, not a general solution he wanted a solution specific to him and what he does, every day. I know in a learning situation it is hard to be specific, but the feedback was honest and straightforward. When your clients talk, listen. Don’t respond, just listen and hear how to make that sale.
Flexibility is key
I think that not having access to technology is not a deal breaker, but I have to confess I was a little frazzled without it. And you know what, it showed. We depend on technology so much in the course of day that when it isn’t available we feel like we are handicapped. The most successful business owners know that if it can wrong it will, and you had better know how to work without it.
Knowledge is power
After the failure of technology and the less than stellar presentation, it was all saved because I knew my stuff. The moral of the story is that your clients come to you because you know what you’re doing. Don’t discount what you bring to the table. It is an incredible thing that you are an expert, even if you don’t like being called one. Your clients bet that you know what you’re talking about, so make sure you prove them right.
Business is all about lessons learned and the view from the top is all about the lessons you have learned along the way. Adaptability and the willingness to change brings out the best in every business owner.