Avoid Being Treated Like a Commodity
Are you tired of clients who see your engineering or architecture work as just another commodity? Do you feel like a soup can on a grocery store shelf? It's time to say no to low-bid work and stop being treated like a necessary evil. Saying no to clients who only want low-bid work is a good marketing move. Do not allow commoditization of your expertise.
Say Goodbye to Scope Creep
Do you have clients who love scope creep? You know, the ones who add task after task without expecting to pay for the extra work. You do not have to work on projects that lose you money. Saying no to scope creep without compensation is good marketing. Avoid working on projects that lose you money.
Be Honest About Timelines and Budgets
Do you sometimes feel like you can't make a client's timeline or stay within their budget? Be honest about what you can and cannot do. Being honest with clients upfront is good marketing strategy. Let clients decide if they still want to hire you.
Stick to What You're Good At
Do you have clients who want you to take on projects that are outside of your area of expertise? Good marketing with an eye to the long game is helping them find the right consultant for the job. Helping clients find the right consultant earns you the role of trusted advisor. Stick to what you're good at and complete profitable projects.
In conclusion, saying no to certain clients and projects is a good marketing move. It's time to stop being treated like a commodity. You can avoid scope creep and projects that lose you money. Be honest about what you can and cannot do and stick to what you're good at. By doing so, you can complete profitable projects and get paid for your expertise.
Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you needed to give constructive feedback to a co-worker, client, or business associate, but felt hesitant because you were concerned about how they would receive it? If so, I have a communication game that may be helpful to you: "Green Light, Red Light, Green Light."
Think back to your childhood and the game of "Red Light, Green Light." In this game, one person is designated as the traffic light and the other players must stop or go based on the traffic light's commands. Now imagine a communication game based on this concept that can help you navigate difficult conversations with others.
Here's how it works: Let's say you have a co-worker who has a habit of interrupting others, which has started to frustrate clients in meetings. You know you need to address this issue, but you're concerned about how your co-worker will receive the criticism. This is where "Green Light, Red Light, Green Light" comes in handy.
Green Light: Begin the conversation with something positive and encouraging about your co-worker. It could be something specific like, "I've noticed you've been coming up with some great solutions for our clients recently. I really admire your hard work and dedication."
Red Light: Next, provide the criticism in a direct and kind manner. Let your co-worker know that you've observed them interrupting clients during meetings and that it's causing frustration. Be brief and to the point.
Green Light: End the conversation on a positive note, again providing specific feedback. For example, "I hope you find my feedback helpful. You are a great problem-solver and a valuable asset to our team."
Using "Green Light, Red Light, Green Light" allows you to give constructive feedback in a way that is more likely to be heard and received well. Nobody likes having difficult conversations, but when done with kindness and encouragement, they can be appreciated and even beneficial. Give it a try and see how it works for you!
Submitting a statement of qualifications (SOQ) for a project is table stakes. It is easy to believe what we write and present in an SOQ is what wins the project. It is not! The SOQ/proposal is the minimum entry requirement for the right to compete for the project. So where exactly does an SOQ/proposal fit into the sales process? How much weight does it really have in the final selection of a firm?
Here are the most important factors that determine a project win.
Notice that the three most important factors to winning a project have little to do with the SOQ/proposal. By the time the client is reading our submission, they should know who we are and trust us. The SOQ/proposal is the final step (besides a shortlist and interview) that should seal the deal. The data we provide in an SOQ/proposal should be justification for the client selection committee to select us.
What an SOQ is NOT! An SOQ is not . . .
Gabe Lett, FSMPS, CPSM, LPC