Do you have trouble communicating honestly with your clients? Do you wonder what piece of the puzzle you are missing when it comes to building healthy, long-lasting client relationships?
Today we are talking about my #1 essential ingredient to having healthy mature client relationships. This is what so many people dream of, because their experiences are the exact opposite. They are used to unhealthy and immature client relationships.
Join us for a 5-day series coming up that’s all about scope creep. (You know, when your client(s) take over your entire life, or a project goes from simple to stressed?) Register here to join us on August 30th!
Building Healthy Relationships with Candor
The word “candor” changed a lot of things for me. I have a long history of rising into formal and informal leadership roles, and behind all of that success is the concept of candor. I once had a tough boss who asked me to be less candid, and because of that I began to examine how I could grow in my career while still honoring and leveraging my gifts.
“Candor allowed me to build deep relationships, get authentic buy-in, helped me establish an open door policy, and be a respected leader.”
Candor is the quality of being open and honest in expression, and it was my special sauce. The problem is that it can get a bad rap because it is easily misunderstood and can imply that you are sassy or condescending. But it is the #1 ingredient in my success in having long healthy mature client relationships!
“If I’m not going to be honest, direct, frank, or open… how could I ever truly be an authentic partner?”
Candor has enabled me to build solid relationships and two-way communication with my leader and the teams I’m supporting. Two-way conversations are a huge piece of what we encourage in our Director of Operations (DOO) program because I believe it has the power to keep you happy, fulfilled, and to grow your business.
When it feels like you are going different directions in your relationships, candor will bring you back. When things need to be addressed, these conversations can happen with much greater ease. Scope creep will happen in both client relationships and projects, and when it does… candor is queen. I am convinced that we have high turnover in the online space because there is a lack of candor happening.
Are You Candid?
Check in with yourself. Are you able to express your thoughts? Are you able to be open and honest with your expression? Continuously ask yourself this question.
Even in tough moments ask yourself what can you do to be honest and open? Sometimes it means delivering a hard message, but just because it’s difficult doesn’t mean it needs to be done in a negative way. You can still come with solutions, and kindness. I want to make sure that people don’t assume that candor has a negative connotation.
How Can You Add Candor?
What can you do to add candor to your life?
- Pick clients you align with. You ultimately get to choose who you will work with. You will naturally have greater ease when you are serving clients whom you align with.
- Be bold and address gaps you are seeing. Take the reins and address the gaps, opportunities, shortcomings, and feedback.
- Have more conversations. Continuously get in front of your leader, and have thought provoking conversations, offer course corrections, and bring solutions. Have these conversations so they can begin to hear you better. Coach them and partner with them.
- Reporting is fundamental for any service provider. Your leader wants to see what you have been up to, and it will facilitate conversations that should be rooted in candor.
- Ask for feedback. How are you doing, and where are your opportunities? By doing this, it shows them that you are open. Take that feedback and expand on it to make it a two-way conversation.
“The ability to be candid is directly related to the quality of your client relationships.”
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Weekly Ops Activity
Tell me how you practice candor with your clients. Join us at our private FB community, and share an example of how you show candor in your relationships.
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