I was recently on a phone call with my manager and a client about the work I had recently done for the client. It was part of a new program that we are developing, and I am leading to make our client experience better. The client had said they loved me and my manager wanted to talk to them for more feedback on how we were doing in the delivery of the service we are providing to the client.
I originally expected just the main contact person to be on the call and she invited her whole team. She started the call saying how pleased she was with the deployment and specifically pointed out how please she was with the work I had done. On the side, my manager messaged me saying, They really do love you. I would say that he was pleased with the work I had done with the client. It was a nice way to finish the day.
As the evening went on, I started to think about next week and realized that I was going to see another client to do the same type of work and I almost had a panic attack around What if this customer does not love me? Heck, I have set such a high standard with the first customer, what if it does not go as well?
I had to sit with that for a few moments and wonder where it came from and then I realized that I wanted to please my manager. It had felt good to please my manager that I did not want to let him down with the next customer. On top of that, when I had finished the work with the original client, the main contact had sent a message to the owner of the company about how well the work had gone, which made me even more want to please both the owner and my manger.
So much pressure and really, how did the first client go? I was there for five days and the first two days, I basically did nothing for them. I was there with another resource and he tied up the client resources that I could not get any of my tasks scheduled and it wasn't until the third day that the client looked at what I wanted to accomplish and then they started setting up the meetings that I needed and on top of that, they set up a big meeting with all the key staff, which I had not planned for.
When the meetings started, I did what I do. I listened and learned about their people and the technology they were using. I asked questions to make sure that I understood and to understand why they had done this or that. I was present, just being me. I gathered the information that I needed from the meetings. I was there to evaluate their staff and the technology they were using. Their staff was wonderful and there was one individual that stood out.
I was not certain what to do in the team meeting, so I set out with a presentation that overviewed our company and what we had sold them. I got to a point in the presentation and paused for questions. People asked how we started, and how I got involved. For the rest of the meeting, I just told stories about how we started, the ups and downs, how I met the owner, and some of the cool things I have done in my career.
On the last day, I finally got a chance to sit down with the leader from the client side and had a discussion on where she was looking to take the program, something I had hoped for on the first day, and as usual, things work out for the best. I told her about the one employee that I thought was special and she agreed. I had wanted to connect with that employee on my last day, but found out she was out that day. So, I sent her an email thanking her and telling her she was great and keep up the good work. Not long after I sent this employee the message, I got a reply back from her thanking me for the stories I told in the team meeting and how it had inspired her.
So, did I set out to be loved by the first client? No. Did the visit go exactly as I wanted it to go? No.
What did happen? I held space what an outcome, while I wait patiently for the meetings that I needed to happen. I was present for the interactions that I had with the client. I allowed for the trip to unfold as it needed to unfold. During the trip, I was not trying to get the client to love me, I was more focused on getting an outcome and being present for that to unfold. Everything else was just the cherry on top. I did not expected to be loved. I did not expect their leader to send the owner a glowing review. I was really just me.
Also, I was holding the space for an outcome, but I was not really clear on the outcome, because this was a new program we were developing. I had a general idea where I wanted to go and I really just had to let it unfold and figure it out as I went, especially without connecting with their leader until the last day.
With that said, what can I really expect with this client this week? Why not more of the same? I can hold a bit clearer outcome and I can also let it unfold as it needs to unfold.
Thank you for reading and if you have gotten this far, I want to let you know that I have a few openings in my coaching schedule that has recently opened up. If you are interested in receiving coaching from me, please head over to the Connect with Sean page and send me your information. I will set up an initial call for us to talk about what you are looking for from coaching, I will explain how I coach, and we can then decide if there is a fit for us to work together.