Know how to read your A, B, Cs

By popular demand – here’s an oldy but a goody from the vault that I’ve recently shared during training in honing your key messages. Enjoy!

I’m sacking people this week. I don’t mean my team, just clients.

I try following my gut when the opportunity arises to work with someone and I’m getting good at reading potential “A” clients from a “B” or a “C”. Mostly I decline work upfront if I identify a C, but sometimes I do it as a favour (bad idea), for a friend (terrible idea) or for free (and that’s just stupid really). I always regret it. Bet you do too.

There’s a simple way to ensure you’re working with like minds, getting paid, loving your clients and the work you do together. Stop regularly to classify your clients and their work as A, B or C.  You want all As in an ideal world. So if you can’t improve the Cs to Bs, fire them; then focus on improving the Bs to As within a set timeframe.

A clients are fun, love what you do, pay on time and have scope for being lifelong clients – they deserve most of your time. Bs are potential As or bread and butter and may be learning opportunities for your team. Cs are confusing, cheapskates, complain, make you cranky. Cull them. And stop attracting them. I find the funny thing about Cs is when you try to fire them they want you more! It’s a sign; that sign says STOP. I have one C in my sights and by the time you read this, we will have broken up.

My tip:

If you’re cringing when a client calls, they’re a C. Remember that the time you invest in your work has an opportunity cost so you could be doing something better if you make room – why work with Cs if you’re bringing you’re A game? I hope all my clients are reading this one, because you’re “A Grade” in my book!