This blog is about all matters business and personal of a sole practitioner. I have a practice with one member of staff.
Upside of losing a key client
Losing a key client was a major blow on my confidence, motivation and finances. The upside to this was that it really made me think where did I go wrong? What can I learn from this so I am not faced with the same situation again?
In my case it was lack of client contact. By this I do not mean collecting and dropping documents. I mean sitting down with clients’ away from day to day distractions and talking to them. Talking about them and not about me, this is difficult to do but I am learning as I am going along.
Today was my first quarterly lunch meeting with a key client. It turned out to be a long lunch meeting – 3 hours. The client had a lot to say. Topics were part business and part personal. I found it a very helpful meeting since I thought I will now be far more helpful to him. I understand what he is looking from me, his concerns about his business and his ambitions.
It took 4 hours out of my day. On return to the office, I had fair number of emails and calls to deal with. I partly resented that so much of my time was eaten away. This resentment is not justified since in person contact with key clients is so important to ensure client retention. Further, only from this first meeting the client started to talk about additional work he was thinking about asking me to do. This means additional fees. Great!
I love relationship building and getting clients aspect of my work. It is so up my street. At the same time I am so conflicted when I have the routine tasks on my todo list. I just want my business to grow even faster so I can take on another member of staff who can do all the day to day so I can concentrate on building my business. I so want this now.