The ultra-toxic ones might make the headlines, but in my 20+ years of experience with corporates and 9+ years running my own consulting business, I have only come across one case of truly hideous office politics. In fact, all my other clients have been an utter delight to work with.
To ensure you work with dreamboat (and not nightmare) corporate clients, you need a solid system to identify and approach only those companies YOU want to work with.
Most business development and sales training tell you to identify your ideal clients by looking at the industry, the size and the type of the organization. Or maybe the function you want to work with.
All of those are good starting points, but they don’t go far enough. If you limit yourself to these criteria, you will likely waste your time trying to get meetings with prospects who are not a good fit for your business (and might just blank you anyway). Or, worst-case scenario, you end up with a client that you don’t actually like to work with.
To avoid this situation, you need to get a much deeper understanding of your ideal client, something that most people do not do.
4 key points to ask yourself
You must identify:
>> Your personal WHY. This has to be the foundation of everything you do (just check Simon Sinek’s famous “Starting with the WHY”). It’s all about why you do what you do and why this matters to you on a level that is deep enough to motivate you and inspire others to work with you.
>> Your personal and business values. Being crystal clear on these is crucial to finding clients who are aligned with you. For example, if transparency is a core value for you, you will find it difficult to work with organizations that share information on a need-to-know limited basis only.
>> Your personality & style. It is a myth that all corporate work requires you to put on the typical corporate uniform of smart suits and heels (mainly if you’re female). Or that you have to speak and act in a certain way. Today, business cultures vary hugely and this is a relief to many because it means you can focus on businesses that match your preferences.
>> Your goals and aspirations for your results. While obvious, again, very little sales training explicitly teaches you how to find clients who match your aims for impact. They assume that for you it’s just about financial rewards and while those are key, you probably didn’t become an expert in your field just for the money.
Why this is important in landing your ideal clients
But remember, you want to make a real difference and that means you don’t want clients who see your services just as a tick-box exercise (this happens in some organizations when it comes to topics like diversity and inclusion – working with those types of companies can be very disheartening).
Defining these aspects of your ideal client is essential to make sure you target prospects who are actually a good fit for your work (and therefore will get the best results + give you repeat work).
And it has the cool side effect that it also enables you to really stand out from all the other coaches and consultants in your niche. This sets you up for more and higher-paid work.
Get in touch
In my mentorship programs, I help you define your ideal client to this deeper level and then help you create the framework to assess if a company is likely to meet your requirements before you approach them and during the initial conversations. That means you never waste your time on the wrong prospects.
DM me, comment, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss what options are right for you!