"I just don't know if you get it" I heard myself say on the phone recently. And no, I wasn't talking to my mother.
For a long time business owners have lived by the well-known fairy tale that the client is always right. That's exactly what it is... a fairy tale. And as with most fairy tales, they are made up and sometimes a little unrealistic.
When I got off the phone with this client, I admit, I felt a bit bad for telling him that I didn't think he was 'getting it' and probably not the right fit for us.
The truth is, he wasn't and if we kept him on as a client, it wouldn't be fair for him, our team and our valued clients. Since we are all about integrity and getting results for our members, it was my duty to let him go. Surprisingly enough though he agreed on the point of 'not getting it' and I'm secretly hoping that this will help him become slightly more flexible with his thinking. Sometimes it takes a little bit tough love, coming from a good place, to help someone move forward.
So the first important lesson when it comes to dealing with annoying clients is that the client is not always right.
Your marketing's job is to attract the right kind of client, the one you can get the best results for, the one who will be raving about you, the one who is great to work with. Occasionally you will have someone sneak through the doors (virtually or in person) who does not fit that category. And that's when you have to be brave and let them know that maybe you are not the right fit for them. Unless of course you think you can still add value.
Make sure your marketing speaks to the right person! If it doesn't you will have to deal with more painful clients which can be more costly than saying no to a sale. Be selective with who you work with, it pays off in the long run and makes room for more of the awesome clients! Plus you will get much better results and that's what your business is all about, adding value and getting results for your clients and customers. Oh and your team will be thanking you too.
I remember a few select times when we were too soft (or just too scared) to let someone know they were not the right fit and in most cases we regretted it.
If someone sneaks into your tribe who is not a fit, have an open and honest conversation with them (trust your gut on this!).
Be courageous, be polite, be honest, be respectful and do what's right for them, your business and your team. Ultimately it really comes down to doing the best for everyone involved.
I think you get it!