Does your client know the real you?
It is important to understand who you are in this wondrous and somewhat scary place of entrepreneurship. When last have you done an introspection to better understand yourself?
Ask your wife or kids, maybe a friend or even your mother (although she can be a bit subjective), to tell you (honestly) what they think of you by using 3 or 4 words. Scary thought, hey?
If you do it, you might hear words like: serious, jovial, critical, friendly, compassionate or opinionated (like me)! All of these attributes have great applications in your daily business life! Don’t think for one minute that any of these are negative! Applied correctly, it is exactly what your client or business needs and wants at a given instance in their respective existence!
Let me explain how this relates to my life then you might better understand my point: For years I lived by a rule of adjusting to every environment I encounter. I could be a politician, a pastor, a typical male or equalitarianist. I spent numerous, wasteful hours analysing every person I interacted with so I could adjust to their “needs” and not to disrupt the “perfect” equilibrium I have created! I would come home in the evening with a pounding headache and with only partial success!
Over the last few years I decided to abide by who I am, and guess what, some people actually like me; some don’t like me and yet they come to me because I am what they need at that specific juncture in their lives. My 4 word analysis indicated that I am analytical, critical and opinionated (my sisters will say “very”!). I am also easy to talk to, conscientious yet impatient! It isn’t always safe to apply all my traits in all circumstances (like at a family function) and I had to learn to allow for other personalities into my space.
How do I apply it? Being an advisor and mentor, and understanding that this world we live in is dynamic and a place where dog eats dog, I came to the realisation that for the sake of my client’s best interest I have to get to the point very quickly! Clients have gotten to know me for this and even though with new clients I need to be conscientious of my impatience and tact (or lack thereof), there comes a time that I need to get to the point!
Directly applied, my story won’t necessarily work for you but make sure people reach out to you for who you are and what you can bring to their lives. Focus on your expertise and on applying it when solving your client’s problems and spend less on being a psychoanalytic chameleon!
Analyse yourself and understand your attributes, understand how to apply those to the benefit of your client and then let yourself loose on the world out there! You might lose a few clients, or friends, because of who you are, heck we can’t assume to be liked by everyone, but you will be a very content person, one who fits into your own skin and adds value to those wishing to benefit from your awesome personality and proven knowledge!
Go and build your business based on your personality! You will attract each and every client who deserves your awesomeness!
You can do it!
See my article on establishing the Culture of your new company!