How Far Do You Go To Please a Customer? Can It Discredit your Reputation?
Have you ever had that one customer that pushes you over the edge? They keep changing their mind, increasing scope, not delivering, etc. They’re taking you away from focusing properly on the right things for their company as well as your other customers. You know that they need clarity in certain areas but they won’t let you help them. Is the customer right. . . . or always right? Is it worth your reputation?
I worked with a client that fit the description above. As their senior leadership changed their mind and direction, they kept me and our team leaping from project to project (as often happens in big companies). It wasn’t a good use of anyone’s time. Sure, I was getting paid but it’s not always about the money—it’s about reputation. Reputation for delivering, reputation for quality, and reputation for doing the right thing . Sadly, I fired that client! My message was, call me when you settle down a bit. And if things don’t settle down, but you want help, that’s a different conversation. Of course, it wasn’t as harsh as I make it sound; we had a great conversation about where they were and how they could best use their time and money. That didn’t include me…at least not then.
Sometimes you need to have a serious conversation with a client and tell them the relationship isn’t working. It can be for many reasons:
- Poor fit
- Wrong time
- Wrong work
- Unrealistic/unclear expectations
This can be hard to do. Most of us learned that the customer is always right. However, that mentality will keep you swinging in the wind without making any progress at all. My experience is that there’s usually a deeper problem here and that if you don’t have the ability to get to the heart of it, you won’t be successful in any work you’re doing with your customers. In the end, clients appreciate the honesty and integrity of doing what’s best for their organization at that time. As a business leader, you work hard to build a reputation that customers will appreciate. Don’t let one bad customer hurt that reputation.
CoreTech Revolution uses a process that clarifies purpose before work gets started. This is a tremendous benefit to getting off on the right foot. I’d love to share more with you.
CoreTech Revolution is an IT consulting firm that specializes in providing project services, strategy & operations support, and specialized knowledge within HIT and health information exchange. With a keen eye for healthcare operations and business processes, CoreTech Revolution is skilled in defining client requirements, creating, and implementing change management strategies and plans that maximize adoption, minimize resistance, and meet project and organizational objectives.
Our approach of CorePurpose CoreAssessment, and CoreTransformation brings organizations positive and efficient changes to their current structure leaving the staff with successful repeatable processes and sustainable IT foundations.