02 Apr Lost Client, Found Perspective
Recently, I had a client decide to discontinue their partnership with me. While a smaller account, the change was unexpected and caught me off guard. I hadn’t done anything wrong. The organization had simply decided to manage the work I was doing internally so they could spend the money on other things. Regardless, I was immediately consumed by thoughts of money.
‘How would I make up this loss?’
‘Where would I find new revenue?’
‘What if I couldn’t make it up?’
‘Would I have to cut back my team’s hours?’
‘How would I reach my revenue goals for 2018 now?’
‘Who’s going to want to work with someone that loses clients?’
I literally thought all those things (keeping in mind this loss totals less than 3% of my overall revenue… still a respectable and steady source of income but I was far from the collapse I imagined). Shortly, my inner mentor got a hold of my inner crazy and put things into perspective. And then I got to thinking about money. Money and growth. Why is it that businesses are only deemed success when their revenue and profit is growing year over year?
I absolutely want my business and my clients’ businesses to be profitable. I also want them to have a meaningful company culture, programs that support their communities, be ethical leaders in the industry, pay living wages, promote work/life balance and challenge antiquated status quos (okay, I dream big). These things take time to build and sometimes when you are running a scrappy small business, you smartly focus on one thing at a time. And that may mean sales and revenue growth takes a backseat to business and world betterment.
Realistically, this client’s departure is the universe creating more space in my business (to create a podcast, for example) because sometimes we have to say no to more money so we can say yes to a path of more purpose and fulfillment.