Winning While You Lose
Nobody likes a sore loser. Because believe it or not, those who are “lucky” and win quite often have lost plenty of times. Lets face it, no matter how successful a person is, you have to lose some time. What is also important is that you take these losses gracefully and use them to your advantage.
Not too long ago I heard a story about various designers placing bids for a large project.
This particular story involved a business owner who already did design work for a local subdivision. This designer had worked with the subdivision for a few years and had a solid track record. Recently when the subdivision needed a particularly large project done she was openly annoyed and insulted that they would ask her for a bid rather than just give her the work directly.
After taking a few bids, including hers, the subdivision officials met to decide. Her bid was much higher than the rest of the other ones entered. The subdivision ended up going with another designer who was more of what they were looking for.
You Are A Professional, Act Like It
Upon discovering that her bid was not selected, she decided to call and go off on one of the board members.
No matter how disappointed, upset or angry you are with someones decision, they are the customer. Therefore they are right. If you must vent, tell your spouse, go work out or go have a nice dinner.
In this case, the board member got off the phone with her and told the others what happened, the designers remaining accounts were pulled the next day. Needless to say, she wont be recommended or receiving any work from them in the near future.
Benefits Of Taking The High Road
In this case, taking the high road is not just for your ego. Taking the high road is good for business too. Sometimes your style does not mesh perfectly with the client. However, maybe the client knows someone who your style does mesh well with. To this person, you are the perfect fit.
By remaining professional, people are likely to still recommend you. Especially if they felt bad for wanting to but not doing business with you before.
You never know how a bridge you have burned with your business might come back to haunt you down the road. Only burn that bridge as a last resort.
Be The Hero
Do competitors ever drop the ball? Yes. Even though you knew you were the best choice all along for that particular project sometimes the client has to fail with someone else for you to succeed. By remaining professional, you keep the doors of communication open so that you can be the client’s saving grace.
The real moral of the story is, when you fail, learn from it. Keep going. If you need to vent, never do it to customers. Always be a professional. You will find that you will not only be a happier person, but your business won’t bear the brunt of your lack of self control.