What I learned from losing a £100k corporate client

This lesson hurt…

I had been working with this client for a couple of years and loved what we were doing; They were fun, they were exciting, they got fabulous results.

So it was pretty disappointing when they told me that for the next stage of the project, they’d look at getting a large consultancy.


They explained that while they loved what I had helped them achieve, they felt that as a small business, I did not have the resources to scale the results across the organization (to be fair, we are talking 85,000 people in 36 countries).

So how do you deal with the vexed issue of scale when you are a small business?

Building an internal team for success

#1 The first thing is to make sure that you build an internal team of support from the corporate’s own employees. Leaders who are impacted, people who are experienced or passionate about the change you can help them create. 

This is something that I always do, I even state this as a requirement of working with me. Why? Because I know from my own experience and famous research that NOT involving a company’s people at all levels of a project is a surefire way to make the project fail. 

Be it cultural change, leadership improvement, restructuring, creating high-performing teams – all of those things are only successful if they are driven from the inside of an organization, not by external consultants parachuted in. 

I actually make a big point about this in my marketing and business development and prospects who have been bitten by this in the past love the fact that I set myself apart from others. 

So if you want to e.g. roll out a leadership program or a wellness initiative across a larger part of an organization and to do this work over a period of time (i.e. not just one-off sessions), then start planning early how you can build an internal team of supporters.

Become the trusted advisor (and coordinator)

#2 No matter how many internal supporters you gain, there might be times where you need more hands to deliver your program / help your client achieve their goals.

Ideally, you anticipate this stage (I hadn’t fully) and position yourself as the person to help source the additional resources and be the liaison or even the person who pulls it all together. 

Because your client already knows and trusts you, they will most likely be very happy to have your help – remember, they are super busy and don’t really want to spend their time finding, vetting, engaging and managing a set of external consultants!

Here you step into the role of the truly trusted advisor, which is both very fulfilling and can be very lucrative.

Bring in your own people

#3 Finally, depending on your topic, you might actually be able to go to your own network and bring in a larger team of experts to supply the needed resources. 

For example, when I work with corporate clients there are occasions when I bring in a trusted specialist in conflict resolution communications – something that’s not in my skill set but useful for the project. 

If you are a high-performance coach, you might want to bring in someone with experience in, say, ensuring diversity and equality. Or if you are helping employees reduce stress in their hybrid working environment, you might bring in someone with deep insights into ergonomics.

What I can offer you 

Being able to scale your corporate offer from individual one-off events to sustained and scaled service delivery is one of the things you learn in my 1:1 Coaching program. 

I also go into more detail about how to design your corporate offer and your delivery program so that you have a portfolio with multiple entry points for prospective clients, so that you change their thinking from “should we work with her/him?” to “what is the best option for us to work together?”.

I also work with you on focusing on the right niche that you are excited about working with, help you with your marketing message so that you attract only those prospects who are right for you, show you how to create a super-effective marketing strategy that fills your diary with prospective calls and teach you how to have simple but effective sales conversations and create proposals that convert at approximately 80% of the time.

This program works best for those people who have solid experience in their field and are willing to do the work – it’s not a get-rich-quick scheme.

Following this program, you should be able to have 1-2 explorative conversations with ideal corporate prospects per week (if you reach out to sufficient numbers) and book 1-2 new corporate clients per month for your business for $5k-$15k contracts.

If you’re interested in the program, the next step is to DM/email me and we’ll have a chat to see if it’s a good match for you to get results in your business.

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Miriam Gilbert, founder of Impactfulness Lab, smiling

About Me

With more than 20years experience as a corporate decision-maker and CFO, 8+years running my own 6-figure consultancy I KNOW exactly what goes on in corporate mindsets – and how to sneak into their brain, charm their mind and get them to throw their budget at you.

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