Whenever I try to give professional advice to my client, she dismisses my opinions and goes with her own ideas.
What should I do?
If you know that you are an expert and that your advice is sound, do not allow your client’s behavior to weaken your confidence in your business. Instead, examine whether your communication style is the problem. Does she perhaps prefer to receive information and opinions in writing backed up with a lot of details? You need to understand how you can work best with her particular idiosyncrasies.
I once had a client who told me, “There’s not a problem just because you say it’s a problem.” At first, I was taken aback by her statement, but then I realized that she wanted me to provide her with a better explanation about why there was a problem. I assumed that she would just trust my opinion, since I was the expert she hired. We all know what happens when you assume something.
Next, look specifically at your dynamic with your client. Is her lack of respect for your opinions causing you to become resentful, making matters worse? Email communication is always a bad idea when a relationship is going south. A conference call is good, but a face-to face meeting to clear the air is always best.
If you continue to feel underutilized, be extremely pro-active in doing what’s expected of you. Over communicate for clarification about assigned tasks and completed assignments.
Ultimately, if you’re unable to change your client’s attitude towards you, may need to renegotiate the nature of your working relationship. In other words, move on. The next time you get a proposal request make sure the dollar figure exceeds their budget, and they will not call you again.
For more tips on how start or grow your small business subscribe to Melinda Emerson’s blog http://www.succeedasyourownboss.com.
Melinda F. Emerson, known to many as SmallBizLady is one of America’s leading small business experts. As a seasoned entrepreneur, professional speaker, and small business coach, she develops audio, video and written content to fulfill her mission to end small business failure. As CEO of MFE Consulting LLC, Melinda educates entrepreneurs and Fortune 500 companies on subjects including small business start-up, business development and social media marketing. Forbes Magazine recently named her one of the Top 20 women for entrepreneurs to follow on Twitter. She hosts #SmallBizChat Wednesdays on Twitter 8-9pm ET for emerging entrepreneurs. She also publishes a resource blog www.succeedasyourownboss.com Melinda is also the author of the national bestseller Become Your Own Boss in 12 months; A Month-by-Month Guide to a Business That Works. (Adams Media 2010)