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Monthly tips to improve the business and practice of members of The Society for the Advancement of Consulting, LLC - Issue #64: January, 2009

Monthly tips to improve the business and practice of members of the Society for Advancement of Consulting, LLC

What to say when the client says, "We're tightening out belts in these uncertain and tough economic times."

  1. I don't blame you, so are my other clients. Let me tell you what we're working on together to achieve greater economies while maximizing margins.
     
  2. That's what the last six prospects told me. Five became clients. The other is still struggling.
     
  3. Why do you think some businesses are thriving right now, even in your industry?
     
  4. Then you'll want to hear about how to be positioned to take advantage of the inevitable resurgence, which the best organizations are preparing for.
     
  5. I understand, but you can only tighten so much before you cut off the blood supply. Would you like to hear how to stay healthy and not fade away?
     
  6. Who is "we"? Are your employees making decisions at the front line which are saving you money AND gaining you customers?
     
  7. And how do you propose to maintain, let alone build, customer loyalty when your plan is to reduce customer services and response time?
     
  8. What if you primary competition launched an aggressive marketing campaign next week? Do you think you'd lose market share? I do.
     
  9. Your competition is probably thinking along similar lines and pulling back. Doesn't it make more sense to move into that vacuum?
     
  10. What is your priority for "suffering"? Is it your quality, your service, your market share, your margins? Or all of the above?
     
  11. This is a $14 trillion (or whatever) economy. Are you seriously saying that you think you're unable to find new customers and provide new
    products and services to existing customers? If so, let me turn your world upside down.
     
  12. You're really not talking about lowering your profile, you're talking about whether you survive or not. If you keep your head down long enough, you'll disappear from sight.
     
  13. If you're tightening your belt, it means your belt is already too lose or you have too much weight to begin with. Why not take a strategic look at your operation instead of a reactive one caused by external elements?
     
  14. Consider me a pair of suspenders.
 
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