Have you ever actually felt the exact moment that you lost all respect for a professional associate? In this episode, Eliot and Jodi discuss how straddling two messages in an attempt to be liked often ends in no one being served. For those moments when you are dedicated to something higher than “what the clients say they want”.
Why is that important for business?
Helping clients doesn’t always mean doing exactly what they say they want. You must make sure you are maintaining your professional responsibility to do not only your best work but work that aligns with your values. The task of discerning and assigning where your allegiance and loyalty is critical. This allegiance is not just to a certain party – sometimes it is to an ideal or value, or to the client’s best interest. Sometimes it is displaying allegiance to say, “we can’t work together”.
It is important to also consider the other side. This is not a sign of weakness; it is a sign of strength, and of you being grounded in your profession and the desire to give the client’s what they most need, which is honest advice and not a cheerleader.
It is an act of love to be truthful and honest about what is really going on at the moment for your clients. Making sure you are not losing a sense of yourself when you are deciding what the client needs right now. Is that something I can provide? Can I do my best work with this client?
Often, the most important work you will do with clients isn’t to do what they ask of you.
It is instead about separating the emotional response from the real need and helping them find another way to get their real needs met. The most important skills you can cultivate are the ability to get to the bottom of the need they are trying to meet. This could be simply asking, “What other solutions might scratch that itch?”. This means asking “what problem are you trying to solve with that solution?” before deciding it is the best solution.
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