Ep83: When The Customer Needs to Hear NO

27 minutes

Going into an audition as an actor, you have to make a decision about how you are going to play a character. You can play it as you think the director wants to see it, or you can make your own choices about who the character is. 

Turns out, taking on a new client as a business owner is a lot like being an actor at an audition. 

In this episode, we ask, “when do you need to say ‘no’ to a client?”

Why is that important for business? 

 Just like in acting, the secret to success could very well be making a clear, early choice about who you are and what you do. When you are the trusted advisor that someone is relying on, part of what they are buying is your expertise and your insight. In trying to please the client, you can’t ignore your own perspective.  

Sometimes, the key is to go for the “no”. No is a magical word. As an expert, it is often incumbent on you to say, “no, that’s not the way we are going to go”. But in taking that stand, you have to be willing to either walk away or do it the client’s way if they don’t agree with your perspective. There comes a point that the customer has a limitation that they won’t move on, and that also has to be okay. This is why it is important to take a stance of “committed but not attached” - you are merely committing to giving your expert view, but not attached to how they respond to it. 

It requires some bravery to being willing to not get every job, and to get over the insecurity of appearing wrong. It is daunting to take a stand, and you should make sure it is a stand you believe in. 

 

Resources mentioned

Jason Momoa does the Haka for his Game of Throne’s audition. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2dE786RERGE

 

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