Business

Your clients get really pissed off with...

complex practices that create confusion | not learning from mistakes | lack of transparency | no clear plans for action | doing similar tasks multiple times
Author:
Forrest Tuten
7 min to read

Thesis

Be dependable and transparent. Let your yes be your yes. Be clear and have a systematic process that shows consistency. These elements are key to your success and that of your clients.

"Building trust takes long - years, sometimes decades. It takes a second, a word or a misstep to lose it. Regaining trust takes even longer." - Assegid Habtewold

Your business should be a beacon of trust, a place where your customers find refuge from all the noise, where they know they can depend on you, right?

Now, this DOES NOT mean perfection. It simply means doing what you say, or quickly acknowledging when you can't, explaining why and sharing your plan for ensuring the mistake doesn't happen again or how you're going to fix it for them.

It also means having a simple process that works, because our world is complex enough and "the paths of least resistance" always win in our human brains.

It means you're confident in your approach and you have a track record for helping others accomplish what's most important to them. You're not arrogant in this but you show humility within your confidence here.

These dispositions, practices, approaches are the ultimate measure of trust-building.

DON'T BE AFRAID of making mistakes, be afraid of making the same mistakes over and over again.

DON'T BE AFRAID of the market tanking, be afraid of not calling your clients when it does.

DON'T BE AFRAID when clients share their frustrations, be afraid when they don't. Like my coach who always said "don't worry when I challenge you to become better, worry when I stop"

Clients get pissed off by a lot of things, but they don't leave because you make mistakes at times, they leave because you aren't showing them a plan of action to avoid the same ones in the future and/or you haven't acknowledged the issue at hand quickly with a plan to remediate the frustration situation as soon as possible.

Get good at being transparent

This is not a weakness. It's an unbelievable strength and visual aid for your customers to see you as having nothing to hide. That is what builds trust and what ultimately causes your customers to relax when things aren't perfect, as they never will be.

  1. Go out of your way to communicate what's going on in difficult situations
  2. Get good at taking extreme ownership, it will show an insane level of confidence
  3. People hire you to lead them, so lead without fear

Nothing is more frustrating than following a bad leader

"A leader must lead, but also be ready to follow. They must be aggressive, but not overbearing. A leader must be calm, but not robotic. They must be confident, but never cocky. A leader must be brave, but not foolhardy. They must have a competitive spirit, but be a gracious loser." - Jocko Willink, Extreme Ownership

Don't become the advisor that drives clients crazy. Don't oversell and underdeliver. Don't parse your words. Avoid these by:

  • Doing what you say you're going to do or IMMEDIATELY acknowledging when/why you can't
  • Letting your actions and history sell for you, not your overconfident words
  • Showing customers they can rely on you because your stable, sure-footed in your process and are unwilling to speak poorly of anyone behind their back

It's easy to follow a leader that leads through service

When your main focus is elevating the position of others first before your own, you'll rarely struggle with finding success. This is not as much of a 'take, or be taken' world as some would have us believe.

Always have a clear plan of action for how hiring you is going to get them further ahead, faster than they would without you. This is almost impossible to do without a clear, repeatable process. Otherwise, you just look like chaos and nobody can really trust that.

Repeatable process also limits the possibility of having to redo what everyone thought was already done. Or when things are more complex than they need to be. Don't you get frustrated when you go to the doctor and have to fill out the same form 5 different ways? It's insanity candy.

  • Be transparent
  • Be confident yet humble
  • Know your limitations and be honest about them
  • Have a clear, repeatable process

There's not much else you need for success.

Following this path will make your business trustworthy, will limit mistakes and make you very referable. You can do this!

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