By Coach Joni Inman, ActionCOACH Business Coaching and CWCC Member
Have you ever been in a relationship, either personal or professional, that has left you feeling totally exhausted? Everyone has someone like this in their life. Have you ever been in a purchasing situation and the person selling you something zapped your energy? Once you got out that door as fast as you could, did you go back? Of course not! If you’ve never felt this way, or don’t know anyone like this, be careful, it may be you!
In every relationship, you have an emotional bank account with that person and you’re making deposits and withdrawals into their account. As you’re interacting with your clients, train yourself to think: “Am I adding to their emotional bank account or am I making a withdrawal?” Think about ways that you can routinely make deposits into the emotional bank account of your customers. This can have a huge impact on whether or not you get referrals and if you’re able to make your business profitable.
Since your number one customer is you (a business has to serve the owner and her team first and foremost), you have to include yourself in this list. How do you make a deposit into your own emotional bank account? Do you need a day of rest? Do you need a massage? Do you need some extra help? You always want your additions to the account to outweigh the withdrawals.
Think for a moment about your ideal clients. How does it feel when you work with them? How do they treat you? How easy is it to go above and beyond for them? Now, think about your actual clients and rank them in your mind as an A, B, C or D. Your A clients are your awesome clients. Your B customers are your basic clients, or your bread and butter clients. If you are like most business owners, 20% of your customers bring in about 80% of your revenue. These are the ones that make your business profitable and where you are most likely to get referrals. Your A and B clients likely make up about 20% of your list.
In contrast, about 80% of your problems come from the lower 20% of your clients. This means that it takes just as much time to deal with the lower 20% as it does to deal with the upper 20%. Your C customers are your “can’t deal with” customers and D stands for dead. Not literally dead, but you know they are not likely to become an awesome or even basic client no matter how you bend over backwards for them. If you want to increase your energy and make your business profitable, I want you to think about divorcing the D’s and even some of the C’s.
Your deposits into your personal emotional bank account are much greater if you’re dealing with your A’s and your B’s. You get more joy from dealing with them. They get more value from you because you love working with them. Your best referrals are going to come from these clients. So, if you have more energy to nurture your best relationships and get referrals, it will help you to make your business profitable. So, make room for more A and B clients in your life. Break up with your least profitable clients!
Business Coach Joni Inman was Rookie of the Year Americas in the world’s largest business coaching organization, ActionCOACH Business Coaching. She has 30 years of experience in business and leadership. To learn more about how to balance your life and work and make your business profitable at the same time, contact Joni Inman.