I am often asked when networking or speaking to people about A Better Place Consulting,
“Who is a good referral for you?” or “Who’s your best referral?”
I love when someone tells me “anyone”. I love their confidence and excitement to work with anyone but after years in sales and corporate jobs I can honestly say that it is not best idea to focus on working with “anyone”.
Why is that? Because not everyone in the world makes for the best client, for one reason or another. If I am selling bras then a single male might be a more difficult sale than a female in her mid 30’s. I would invest a lot of time convincing Mr. Anyone that this was the greatest bra in the world and while he might end up agreeing with me because my sales skills are that good, he would still not be the best client for my business.
That is why I would not answer the question with “anyone” but rather for my business I want a very specific someone. Some of my colleagues have witnessed first hand my response when asked who are good referrals for me. My response will most likely be “Someone who loves apples”. Now let me explain.
When I am working with a client who is looking for Mr. Anyone we discuss how much time they are spending casting a wide net. Then we discuss where they get the most return on investment of their time and productivity from their clients. I ask them to identify their top ten clients and we look for common denominators. There are similarities across these clients that are tangible things to identify what your ideal client is.
For many business, consulting is such a foreign concept. It could really mean anything. And the kind of business consulting that I do is very mindful and engagement based. My clients need to want the change in their teams and companies in order to make it happen. If clients are not motivated, not eager for advancement, not open to meaningful outcomes, or are resistant to the positive actions taking place, then the outcome is not going to be ideal. If I chose to work with clients that I had to spend 6-8 sessions convincing them that they needed my services and then another 10 sessions to implement our action plans and team focus plans and another 6 months to ensure that the change was meaningful, the client might become frustrated with the process and the cost.
Rather, if I choose to work with highly motivated clients who do their “homework”, go above and beyond on my suggestions, and work in order to create the lasting change in their work environments, the result is a wonderful professional experience, an engaged and inspired workforce, and a great word of mouth referral for A Better Place Consulting.
How do I answer the question, “Who is a good referral for you?”
“A Better Place Consulting has apple cider. We are looking for the kinds of clients that not only know what apples are but that LOVE apples and want to know how to take what they have, explore the possibilities, and create something truly incredible and lasting in their companies.”
Enjoy finding your apples.