On the agency side of my world, we do a lot of work with a strategic partner who is smart as a whip, responsive, and very invested in our success.  What’s not to love about that? 

They’re premium priced but their knowledge and skills have earned them the right to charge that kind of money.  (Might this be how you describe or think of yourself?)  

I’m happy to pay them because of their depth of expertise and how valuable their work is to my company. We should be absolutely in love with them, right?

Sadly, it’s getting more and more challenging to stay in love with them.  It’s not about the big things like their skills, passion, or commitment to our success.  It’s about the little things.

I’m tired of having to be their safety net for silly mistakes.  I’m weary of the sloppy work.  I’m frustrated that I don’t expect them to get it right anymore.  How awful is that — I expect them to screw up because that is what experience has taught me.

Here’s the worst part of this — they go above and beyond for us every single day.  They don’t nickel and dime us when we need something extra.  They do so many things well and right.

But there’s enough wrong that our focus is diverted from all they do right.  They don’t get the credit for all that they provide us, because we are constantly in fix it mode.

How about your shop?  Are you making it hard for your clients to love you by eroding their trust, drip by drip?

  • Missed deadlines
  • Typos in your work
  • Scheduling snafus
  • Transactional, unenthusiastic relationships
  • Lags in responsiveness

None of these are a big deal in and of themselves.  But they add up to a huge deal.

It’s rarely the big things that cost us a client.  But I think our team shakes their head and says, “that’s a bummer but the big deliverable is awesome so the client won’t notice.”  They’re wrong.  The client does notice and the client begins to wonder.

You want to create a sense of wonder in your clients.  But you never want to make them wonder.  I think this is a worthy conversation for your next all team meeting.

You all work too hard to earn a prospect or client’s trust.  Protect it from erosion.