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January 16, 2009


This week we had a great Consultants Connection Meeting, where we discussed “Cleaning Out Our Clients”. Participants had an opportunity to categorize their current client list consider both profitability and value (other rewards besides money that you may get from working with certain clients, such as contacts, challenge, diversification into a new field or industry, fodder for a book or article, that feel good feeling).

Once we identified the types of clients that we had, we then had the chance to think about those relationships as part of our larger business strategy.

* What makes a client both high value and high profit? How do you get more of them?

* What can you do to increase the profitability of those clients that are high value but low profit? What impact does having a large/disproportionate amount of these clients have on your business? (i.e. Opportunity costs!!).

* What can you do to decrease the negative impact of low value clients, even if they are high profit?

Folks suggested partnering with other professionals who may be better equipped to service these clients or help you with the parts you don’t like. Other people suggested weeding these clients out through better screening before the engagement begins.

* Lastly, what should you do about low value, low profit clients?

Get rid of them!! They are taking up valuable time and energy that can be better spent on better clients!

Further insights were discussed, such as:

* The role that marketing plays in both attracting the clients of clients you have AND setting expectations for the way the work gets done.

* Also, participants considered the a lot of troublesome client behavior can be mitigated through both good screening and good coaching about client expectations and boundaries.

It was, as always, refreshing and encouraging being able to discuss these common challenges with such smart and strategic women…I think we all left with tons of food for thought! Thank you to everyone who participated for your WONDERFUL contributions!

posted by Adelaide Fives

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