Each of us has a few certain things that we value more than anything. Usually we value these things much more than other things. And it’s different for each individual.
For one person, being the fastest is important. For another, being diligent is important. Neither is right or wrong. They just value different things. And if they find themselves in situations or with people that conflict, they often cut ties.
When we start dating, we often contemplate our values. We think about relationship deal breakers. The potential of a lifetime relationship makes you think about those things. If someone, even a perfectly decent and good person, has different values, the relationship will likely fail. Or you’ll be resentful of each other after awhile.
But the same is true in business. It’s true for the people you hire to work for you, but also for the customers you bring on board.
It’s easy to bring on anybody willing to pay you when you’re a new business. And all businesses go through ups and downs. During the downtimes it’s easy to bring on customers that aren’t the best fit. Even in good times that can be the case. We get a high off growth numbers. And when that is the case we start bringing on any customer that is interested.
But in the long run, the wrong type of customers, or customers with deal breakers, can be bad for business. They can drain resources. They can make employees frustrated or they can cause employees to lose confidence. It all hits big time on the bottom line and takes away energy from improving the business and finding customers that share the same values.
The process is straightforward…
Contemplate what is important to you, your team and the business.
Then assess current customers. If there are some that don’t fit well with your values, fire them. It won’t be easy, but you have to think long-term.
Then create a process for the marketing team and the sales team. Make sure they are focusing on customers that fit the right profile. It might be more difficult at first, but in the long run everybody will win.
The relationship you have with a customer is a relationship like you have in your personal life. It’s emotional. It’s good to have deal breakers for the health of your team and the health of your business.