Lots of designers are talking to me lately about clients canceling big jobs. It’s disruptive, and it doesn’t make you feel good. But we have to realize that a pandemic and a stock market that’s all over the place are going to make people have knee-jerk reactions on big projects.
However, I think there’s something to be done about that. Many designers have asked me, “Well, should I call them up and check-in to see if they’re ready to start?” It’s the kind of thing that feels needy. We don’t want to do it in a needy way, and you’re not needy, so you’re not going to go that way at all.
Staying in Touch with Clients to Keep Work Flowing
What I would suggest you do is to call your clients and just be friendly. Check in on their health, check in on how they’re doing. Just make it a friendly, check-in call. We all enjoy the connection now because we miss people so much. Ask them how they’re doing. This is a little bit sneaky, perhaps, but when you do that and ask them how they’re doing, they will naturally ask how you’re doing. That gives you the opportunity to talk a little bit about what you’re doing, design-wise, what you’re working on, and what’s successful. You want to mention what you’ve done about presenting virtually and how it was a challenge to start with, but you found out that it works really well, people really like it, and you really like it.
You’re getting all this stuff done, all this preliminary work that could be done before we jump into projects. By talking about what you’re doing in a story format, you’re presenting the idea that they could move ahead with some of their project. The design stuff can get done along with pricing and drawings and other related tasks without pulling the plug on the whole big thing. They’d actually be in a position to know what it was going to cost and what we’re going to do when the time comes. By talking about your other projects, you let people know that it is possible, and you know what? They’re bored, they’re home, and looking for something to do. I think that this can open the doors for you and have some of those projects come back in.
If we have to wait until all of this is over for them to come back, staying in touch with them through this period of time will keep you in an ideal position. You will be front and center, and then it comes back into your bailiwick again. So, don’t lose those people, don’t write the project off, and don’t sink into the hole. Instead, realize that they just need a little more support, a little more connection, and a little more information. Their objection might be, “Well, how are we going to do this if we can’t do it in person?” Just talking about how you’re doing this already and how it’s actually working can counter some of those objections that they have but didn’t mention.
There could be some of those pieces that caused their decision, and then they realize that those objections aren’t real. There are all these things we could do. It’s very common for these jobs to come back and open up again. So, that’s what I suggest you do to keep your jobs moving forward.
Staying Connected with Other Designers
If you need more help or more support, we’re doing once a week calls. They’re on Thursday mornings at 9 o’clock Arizona time. It’s an open Q & A call for the entire community. I’m opening this up because I think it’s time to support people, share what we do here at IDBA, and really help everybody. There’s some incredible solid interior design business advice in these calls, and everybody comes up with something new that they can apply to themselves and use for their business.
If you want more information and want to get a little deeper than that, or a little more support than our weekly calls, please schedule a strategy session with us. It’s just an easy call where we can talk about what our programs give you and how they can support you. This is an interesting time to be doing something like that, and it could change everything for you and your business. Click here to schedule a call today.
So, until we see you again, design something beautiful and get paid what you’re worth.