Loving Your Clients

We all have our favorite clients. They are the ones who truly value our services, heap tons of praise on our designs, and freely refer their friends and associates to us. Others we just click with personally and enjoy being in their company. Some eventually may become good friends.

It’s easy to love those clients. They make us feel good about ourselves and our work. I’d like to suggest you extend those good feelings to ALL of your clients, even the ones who can be dismissive or difficult to work with. That may sound absurd or touchy-feely, but, trust me, there is a method to my madness. Loving your clients, even the ones who are hard to like, is good for business.

You probably are familiar with the saying, to get love you have to give love. That holds true for clients as well. When you love your clients and not just tolerate them, you act differently towards them. They, in turn, feel that difference, and they will act differently towards you. The relationship becomes more respectful and mutually satisfying. Both you and the client experience less stress and find it easier to collaborate. You are happier, and your clients are happier. And happier clients lead to more referrals and positive word-of-mouth, which strengthens your brand.

What does it mean to love your client? Think of how a gifted teacher loves their students. In this sense, to love means to respect the other person, to value who they are as an individual, to truly listen to them and consider their welfare, to give them the benefit of the doubt, to want to help them achieve their goals, to be willing to engage emotionally and not just rationally.

Odd as it may sound, you don’t have to like a client to love them. You just have to acknowledge them for who they are, be positive, and do your best for them.

As an added bonus, loving your clients also will make your team happier by making the work environment more positive and constructive. You and your team will be more productive, get greater satisfaction from your work, and lay the groundwork for bringing in more business. You don’t need to change who you are or how you operate. All you need is love.

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Gail Doby

Gail, with her team at Gail Doby Coaching and Consulting, has helped more than 10,000 designers in 76 countries. Many of them have achieved amazing results... doubling, tripling (and more) their revenue and profit... with clarity and confidence. Gail and her team build one-of-a-kind experiences, walking beside Interior Designers to help them create and implement their plans.
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  1. Kimberly JOI McDonald on April 20, 2019 at 2:44 pm

    Thank you for this great reminder and sentiment about dealing with clients. I think we all need to hear this repeatedly!

  2. Randy Trainor on April 20, 2019 at 5:19 pm

    Yes, Gail, I totally agree. I have noticed that even if the client doesn’t become any easier to work with, I feel better, and in the end everything works out better!

  3. Monique Rizzo on April 21, 2019 at 11:08 am

    Hi Gail,
    I totally agree! Some of my clients have become very good friends and it is wonderful!
    However, once that line is crossed and time has passed being friends, it can be awkward bringing them back as a paying client. And if years past, our rates increased what’s the best way to handle this?
    Thanks for your input!

  4. DesignSuccessU on April 25, 2019 at 12:59 pm

    Hi Monique,

    It’s important to maintain the separation of work vs. friends during the entire engagement. Once that line is crossed, it’s important to say that you keep the friendship as friendship and business as business for your relationship. It has to be said at some point. I still do business with friends and they know they get charged the same price as my clients because it wouldn’t be fair to not charge them.

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