When you start your own business or, are thinking about starting your own business you talk about it to friends and family. (Or, if you’re not, you should!) This is good for feedback, ideas and general conversation so you stick in peoples minds next time they hear someone say “I need a…..” or “I wish I could have help with…..” it gives them the information to recommend you and market your business which is fantastic as not only is it a character reference it is also free marketing!
This does come with a warning though, especially when you are talking to people whilst thinking of setting up. I cannot warn people enough about this……..
People say things they think you want to hear
That’s it, but you knew that already? Well, the thing is unless you have a hundred friends who tell the truth – you know, the one you show a picture of you in a choice of potential new glasses and they’re the one who tells you that you look an idiot (Idiot wasn’t used it was a much stronger word but for the sake of a blog let’s say idiot!) they are the friends you want to come and choose new glasses in real life as you know they will tell you the truth. Whether you are caught up in excitement or a dream they will bring you back down to Earth – these friends are the best ones for feedback even when you don’t necessarily want to hear it, you need to hear it!
No one has friends who are all like that, you will have friends and family who will tell you that they think that it’s a great idea, they will use you and recommend you and know at least 10 people who could do with your help. This is a slight lie. When in the conversation people also get caught up with the idea and the excitement so they will automatically tell you what you want to hear – it’s a human instinct for some of wanting to please people and just make them happy and be liked! Be wary of these people though.
Everyone goes through it, you may even quote for them and give them as much information as possible but, it will turn out they do not follow through or, even worse for you, buy from a competitor. This hurts, I’ll be honest, especially when you’re starting and can be thin on the ground for work with lots of time but not much money so how do you get over it?
- Don’t be offended!! When people start to think about it, they may know someone else who does the same thing or they may even have received some quotes to compare and gone for the cheapest or not at all as money is tight. There’s a hundred reasons as to why they may not have followed through.
- Ask for feedback, genuine feedback (use the word genuine with them!) as to why they haven’t booked or the have used someone else. Find out that reason and use it as a learning curve for the new quote or conversation. You’ve rarely done anything wrong but explain that you would like to know to help you in the future.
It is difficult – a bit like when you interview for a job and you just receive a thanks but no thanks, how do you improve next time or apply for more applicable jobs if no one gives feedback?
Take the time out to find out as much information as possible, don’t take it as a negative, learn from it and move on to the next – good luck!
Feel like you can relate to this and need some organisation in your business to help with focus? Get in touch via phone – 07772 773992 or e-mail – firstname.lastname@example.org