You think you’ve just landed a new consulting client.
You met the marketing coordinator at a medium sized company and she’s told you that she’s talked to her boss about you and they are interested in your services.
You’re feeling good.
The next week you go to this company’s office to sit down and get things going…so you think.
The marketing coordinator greets you in the reception area. She takes you into a conference room and closes the door.
She begins asking questions about your skills. What you can do for the company? How much you’ll charge for your services? And then she says, “my boss also wanted me to ask….”
Let me ask you a question:
Do you sense anything wrong with this picture?
I hope so, because there certainly is.
This consultant has entered into a project that is surely going to present several challenges.
It’ll likely turn into a project that the consultant regrets taking on once it gets started.
Why, you ask?
Because the consultant has made one big mistake….
They’ve failed to identify the “true buyer.”
The true buyer is not the marketing coordinator. It is often not even the manager. It can really only be the person who is writing the checks or making the final decisions on whether or not the consultant – that’s you – will get paid.
So who is this person? It’s the owner, the partner, the CEO, or the President.
As a consultant, if you’re not dealing directly with the person that calls the shots…you’re wasting your time.
Most of us have been in situations like this at one time or another.
You put in a lot of effort into a project only to feel like you’re getting twirled in circles by the client. The main reason this happens is because you are not speaking directly with the decision maker.
Identify who the decision maker is at the company and then make sure you meet with them. Take them out for lunch. Get to know them. Build a relationship with them.
They are the ones that you need to please. The ones that make the decisions. The ones that will sign their name on the check that gets you paid.
Too many consultants fail to meet with the true buyer. Save yourself time and a lot of stress by ensuring you do.