are working with.
When I first began my work online, there were times when I would be on a phone or email consult where I could sense a bit of resistance. Later, I learned that a potential client I was speaking with was not clear what was costing them for services and what wasn’t. That is when I became aware and found the importance of sharing upfront right away that I never billed anyone without them being made aware upfront that there would be a cost if they wanted a service from me. If they weren’t told of a cost, then my work with them was considered part of a FREE consultation. This was important as I have many services I charge for but also
provide many FREE during consulting with new clients.
My clients also wanted to know that they could feel safe talking with me and what they shared wasn’t going to be something shared with many others and a potential business product, service or plan was going to be breeched. I’ve learned this first-hand. There is nothing more disappointing than paying for a service and sending what you believe to be a confidential discussion with someone you are paying for services from and learn the next day that much of your ideas were shared publicly. At that moment that this happened to me, my trust with that person was immediately broken. I respected their talents but knew I could no longer disclose business opportunities regarding future plans for my company with them. It was such a letdown in my eyes.
When working in the professional field, whether online or in the local community, remember whatever your business field is in to take the following into consideration regarding your client-customer and the confidentiality between the two of you.
1. A client-customer is a client-customer. Be ethical and respectful toward them. They want to trust you. Prove to them that they can.
2. If it is your intent to share because you see it as being beneficial to the client, be darn sure that you are respectful enough to ask. Some things are welcomed! Some things should always be kept private. For example, part of my company is for promotional purposes. I share with those I work with upfront that I often throw out FREE promotional as time permits for those I work with and support. At that time, I also share if this is something you don’t want to happen or want to be made aware of each individual time to please let me know then. By sharing that, I have informed the client-customer that their service or product will be “Promoted” but that is where I stop with exposure to them. Verbal discussion and business development plans stay between the two of us. That is a confidential discussion until it is time to disclose if they desire.
3. Confidentiality creates trust between the two of you. Build on it. They will only respect you more and you can bet that they are likely to return for more services later on.
4. Private versus Public Post Discussions should be done with caution. What I mean by this is in the online business world, there are many social media websites, such as Twitter, Facebook, Google+, etc.
Often times, people public comment on others pages and websites for that matter. When doing so, be cautious and respectful regarding what is mentioned in regards to working together. Someone may not want others to know that they are obtaining specific services from you. You should always leave that up to the client-customer to open that up publically. For example, I often post on clients websites and pages.
However, I don’t say on that person’s site that I am their professional coach. They do at times and share
a compliment with me, which is so kind and flattering, but that is their decision to do so and never expected from me.
If you want to build a stronger client base, you have to respect their privacy. I have been seeing too many times recently where the online world does not have a clear understanding of client privacy. Be ethical in your work. Have boundaries and remember to treat the client as if you were the business client yourself, maintain their confidentiality! Best of luck with your business and please remember that if you have any questions pertaining to your business, you can always contact me. I will be happy to answer any questions for you or give you a referral to a professional who can.
Have a fantastic week and as always, MAKE LIFE HAPPEN!
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