Explore over 350 articles that will help you grow your client relationships and improve your personal effectiveness.

The Wisdom of Maimonides: Relationships With a Transcendent Purpose

At the wedding of a dear friend’s daughter this summer, Rabbi Ira J. Schiffer performed a moving ceremony. Rabbi Schiffer, who is an associate chaplain at Middlebury College, based his talk on Maimonides writings. Maimonides was a medieval Jewish philosopher whose is considered one of the leading rabbinical thinkers in history. The scene before the arrival […]

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The Importance of a Doubting Mind

“I used to work for an old-fashioned rainmaker,” a client of mine once told me. “He had that ‘take-no-prisoners’ approach to sales and customer relationships. His motto was, ‘Sometimes wrong, never in doubt.’” Never in doubt, indeed. It’s one thing to have deep-seated conviction about your views, quite another to obscure the truth with overconfidence […]

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The Six Levels of Relationships: Where are Yours?

There are six levels of professional relationships that you should be naturally moving your clients through. The first two are pre-client: Level 1: Contact This is the starting point. We meet someone, have a brief conversation, and exchange business cards. We may stay in touch over the years, but there is little interaction. The individual […]

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Your Business Has Only One Purpose—Are You Focused on it?

Peter Drucker had an unparalleled ability to capture the essence of what’s important in management. In 1973, he wrote: “Because the purpose of business is to create and keep a customer, the business enterprise has two–and only two–basic functions: marketing and innovation. Marketing and innovation produce results; all the rest are costs.” We all know, […]

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The Three Types of Independence You Must Cultivate with Clients

You need to cultivate and exercise three kinds of independence from your clients: Intellectual independence. Sometimes, advisors and service providers forget that one of the reasons they are being employed is to provide independent perspectives. They want to be supportive of a client at every stage of the relationship, and sometimes this desire compromises intellectual […]

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The extraordinary Harry Hopkins–President Roosevelt’s most Trusted Advisor

In January of 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt invited Wendell Wilkie, who had lost his own bid for the presidency the year before, to visit him at the White House. Sitting in front of the fireplace in the Oval Office, Wilkie steered the topic of conversation to Harry Hopkins, who was Roosevelt’s most trusted advisor. […]

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The Secret to Winning Your Next Sales Pitch

Clients hate sales pitches. You probably do, too. How do you like to sit still while someone presents PowerPoint slides to you? Clients don’t like boring pitches, but they love to learn. So turn your next sales presentation into a collaborative, value-added session for the client. Role model what it would be like to actually work with […]

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Eight Reasons Why You Lose Clients – And What To Do About It (Part II)

Sometimes client relationships end for appropriate reasons. But you never want a good relationship to end avoidably. In Part I of this article I described four of the eight most common reasons why client relationships end. These were: 1. A reorganization or executive turnover 2. A one-off or temporary need for your services. 3. A financial crisis or […]

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