Do It Right, Do It Over
In they army they have a saying, â€œHurry up, and wait.â€ In business that same saying can be, â€œHurry up and do it again.â€ In textbook publishing, we had our own version, â€œThe project is over, time for the prototype to begin.â€
Meet Hurry Up Harriet.
Harriet is the boss or the client who calls at the last minute to announce that she needs something done right away. Sheâ€™s clear and concise on what it is, . . . if youâ€™re lucky. Sheâ€™s sketchy and rushes through the details, if youâ€™re not.
Either way, Harriet is precise about one thing the exact time and date that she needs the work complete — 48 hours sooner than any human has performed such a task.
Because itâ€™s your job — and youâ€™d like to keep it — you set forth on the quest of making Harrietâ€™s impossible happen. This requires a significant investment of overtime and work at home, but you do it. Through some miracle and no life, you come through with 7 seconds to spare. You feel like a wrangler at a rodeo. You throw your hands up to check the clock. Youâ€™re about to give your perfect, checked-over-three-times document to Harriet, when you get another call.
It’s Harriet on the line.
She says, â€œOn that document I asked for, Iâ€™ve been thinking, could you also include . . . ?â€ She adds three or four things.
â€œI can wait for the new version until Friday,â€ she sings.
How would you feel about that?
Based on the three previous projects that went the same way, you realize that Harriet will repeat this behavior at least twice more before the current project is over.
On some projects, we never have time to do things right,
but we always time to do things over.
It’s hard enough having to do work for a Harriet.
What’s worse is the days when I act like one.
Do you have Harriet days too?
–ME “Liz” Strauss
Check out the Work with Liz!! page in the sidebar.
Mother Earth says
I so love this thought lix
— to parallel it to my work, a man hears me speak and thinks we could affiliate – he asks me to coffee. we do coffee and he suggests that he become a client – i follow up – no sale – email, email, no sale – no affiliation – another email – he says how are you lets do coffee – is this more courtship to an affiliation? i do coffee, he says i want some vitamin c – perfect let me quote you – email, phone call – phone call – no sale — from a time perspective were talking maybe 3 hours for a maybe sale of vitamin c ?? This feels like crawling through glass. I did land him an awesome affilate potential ( he’s a personal trainer ) Cuz that’s the kindof person I am
I still haven’t earned a dime
here is my question :
can we qualify our clients ? Can you say respectfully — harriet – here are the guidelines in which I work – do you think you can fit into that demograohic otherwise I am not sure we are a right fit for each other ??
I am not sure what I’d say to my client but I wish I could get paid for my time
Mother Earth aka Karen Hanrahan
ME Strauss says
Yes, we can qualify our clients, and not only that, we really should. Sometimes we need to fire them too. 🙂
Sure let’s have coffee. I can’t wait to hear about you and your business. Hope you don’t mind if I take a few notes while we talk. . . . I’ll give you a call, and we can discuss how we might work together.
Naturally, you don’t have to say that at once — could be the second sentence at the end of coffee.
During the call; So, it was great having coffee, let me tell you what I heard. . . . It sounds like you might use me in the following ways — to help you find affiliates, to help you hoose the right products, . . . Do I have that right? Well let’s see I could do that for $$$$/month.”
Does that work?
Mother Earth says
at some level yes, at some level no –
I like the this is what I heard approach
from his perspective he’s watching me — i sell product first and represent a quality brand – so I have to convert him from his costco stuff to what i represent
if he’s a bottom line dollar man he won’t go there
once converted the products sell themselves
it’s just he’s not very swift in his decision making and so he says he needs/ and wants c but gosh darn it I can’t seem to close the sale
he is very intrigued by me – my knowledge and my experience
if i had charged him upfront for my time and services
and this is an ultimate goal
( my consultations are $75 an hour with a generous rebate towards product purchases )
he would have not met with me – my hunch anyway
however I can ask him about that if he ever returns my call 🙂
his business since I met him and since our 2 coffee dates has altered — so from my perpective I have to see where his business is actually going – when he has one business model one month and something completely different the next that makes me hesitate to actually refer people to him
so maybe the time lag has it’s ” meaning ”
I have about 18 clients right now like that — on the fence sortof things
Mother Earth aka Karen Hanrahan
he sees me as someone who knows people
I am watching him