Raise your hand if you hate your job. Go ahead, your boss won’t know why you’re raising your hand in your cube. Unless you’re some freak of the system that landed in your dream job straight out of school, college, or the insane asylum, everyone has hated their job at some point or another. A certain percentage work through it to find joy in their work while the rest either find new employment or look forward to Monday Night Football and the weekend.
Getting fired from my last job just may have been the best thing that happened to me since a certain someone said, “I do,” but getting to this point has been a long journey for me. We can finally say the business is successful and sustainable. Every month we wonder who will be on my plate the next month, but the next month has been continually booked for months now. I have some insight into why I think Petersen Media Group is successful as a new business that started with zero capital.
Know Thy Customer
The first key to getting the work and completing the work as expected is to understand the scope and your customer’s tastes. For whatever reason the vast majority of my designs (all but two or three) go unchanged from what I set out to accomplish for the draft presentation of a site. When something just isn’t right about a design, try to take the initiative to change it before presenting it if your gut tells you that it is an improvement.
The Important Question Is:
What can I do to make the customer feel important. Clients are what puts food on the table, keeps the lights on, and a roof over our heads. There’s no denying that situation, so it’s best to figure out what to do on a project in the plan, estimate, or delivery that will make them a fan for life. New customers are great, but what’s better is a new customer who is so impressed with your work that they not only use you for a second project right away but tell their friends about their new site and how great their experience was dealing with you. THAT is where the stability comes, my friends.
Protect and Serve
Sometimes I amaze myself and dismay those who are aware of how much time I spend with clients at what lengths I go to for ensuring client satisfaction. It doesn’t serve me or my client to leave them unhappy with my product. It’s far better for everyone involved to do such a superior job that it creates a fan who can’t stop talking about me. Those people are out there and keep the work coming in week after week, sometimes day after day.
I’m not saying that you should work for free or under promise and over deliver. What I am saying is that you need to pick your battles with your clients and yourself to determine what it is worth to your business to eat some time or offer a discount for work that goes above and beyond.
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