Sometimes all people want is a good coworker
If you're a service provider, of course you want to provide quality service. We all have - or should have - processes in place to honor the commitment we make to our clients.
But it's important that you don't overlook the importance of being someone a client enjoys working with.
I'm a solo entrepreneur. Yes, I have a team of consultants, but my business is mine. And that's true for most of my clients. It's wonderful to have the control we have over our businesses.
But sometimes that can be a lonely place.
I think there are moments when we all miss being in an office environment and meeting up with coworkers at the water cooler (so to speak). So, I like creating those types of moments with my clients.
Be a Sounding Board
Sometimes we all just need someone to think through something with us. That's fine - I'm happy to take that time with my clients. Truly, it doesn't take long and they appreciate it. Actually, by doing this I'm often saving us time in the long run by determining what might work and what won't.
Know generally what's going on with your clients personally and ask them how they're doing. Are they dealing with aging parents or about to send a kid to college? Taking a moment at the beginning of a meeting to ask a thoughtful question goes a long way.
Don't be Too Serious
I truly believe that well-placed humor goes a long way. Of course, it's important to read the room. Some people are there to just do business - get in and get out. But others - especially solo entrepreneurs - really respond to having a little fun along the way.
Remember that behind every business is a person. We all want to enjoy what we do and we all love working with fun people who make the day go faster.