A few weeks ago, during a complimentary Instant Insight Session, the person I was talking with had an “aha” moment. She had been struggling to meet her clients’ expectations in ways that didn’t really work for her. If she couldn’t be herself when helping her clients, this told me she wasn’t really working with her ideal customers. Later, she sent me this:
“What a relief to know I don’t have to get a personality transplant to boost my visibility, attract more clients and hopefully be more successful.”
I started thinking about what it is that attracts ideal customers to you, and how important it is for you to be yourself—not only for your work and for your clients, but for your own well-being. And it reminded me of this article I wrote a few years ago about asking questions and listening. So I dusted it off and I’m re-running it for you today—the kids are a few years older, but the message is the same!
“Moopie, are they dry yet?”
The clay figures we’d made that morning were taking FOR. EV. ER. to dry. And that meant we wouldn’t be able to paint them before we had to get on the road the next day, when it would be time for me to take my little charmers back home to their parents.
(I am “Moopie” to my son’s children, not because it means “Grandma” to them, but because I’ve been “Moop” to everyone in my family since before I can remember. For reasons known only to them, my older brother and sister found it easier to say “Moop” than to say “Marcia.”)
So, since the carefully sculpted Angry Birds, Hello Kitty, butterfly, worms, and pizza were going to have to sit and dry, we moved on. To t-shirt painting!
I’m the facilitator
I am merely the facilitator in these exercises. I guide the wishes of the true creators: Austin, age 7, and Sydney, age 3. I can get my hands on the good stuff and make it work — their job is to bring the ideas. (I have a friend who says that for a kid, having an agreeable grandmother is like having a big Baby Huey to play with — one who can drive.)
Austin is definitely more controlled in his art than his sister. He knows what he wants to create, and when he’s comfortable with his tools, moves ahead with confidence and a plan. If he comes to a new challenge, he asks for help. He asked for help painting the Angry Bird on his shirt. The fabric paint was blobby and difficult to control. He stood behind and directed me.
Sydney doesn’t have a plan, or a thought, or a moment’s hesitation. Anything goes, and she’s always thrilled with what she’s created. She threw the permanent fabric paint all over the table — it was all I could do to follow behind, mopping up. The medium was the message, for sure.
In the end, both kids got what they wanted out of our weekend (except I did make them take baths at the last minute). Both were very pleased with themselves.
They had been catered to and presented with options.
Listened to more than talked at.
Understood more than sold to.
Assisted. Guided. And respected.
And shown in every possible way how much they were loved.
After they left (and after my 3-hour nap), I was reflecting on how easy and natural it is to be Moopie. Kids know what they want from you, and the difference you make to them.
It’s almost the same with my business
As long as I’ve been in business (over 30 years), I still grapple with the problem of how to communicate my own strengths, what I do, and how I can help, even though this is something I work on with you, my clients, every day. It’s really hard to find the exact words, isn’t it?
We should all know how to describe what we do so people will want to work with us, right? And if I’m teaching this to you, I should Read More