Are Your Suppliers and Clients Holding You Back?

As a business owner, it’s your job to keep an eye on your bottom line. If you’re spending too much time or energy dealing with a business supplier or a client who needs to provide more benefit to your company, then it might be time to reevaluate the way you do business. Every single one of your clients and suppliers is either helping you move forward or holding you back.

Your Business Supplier

Suppliers can make your life easier or make your life a living nightmare. That’s why reliable, trustworthy, and value-led suppliers are a must-have, and you need to be cutthroat about it. 

It would help if you were scouting 365 days a year for suppliers. Even when things are going okay, you need to be on the lookout because you never know what might happen next.

Perform appraisals on your current suppliers. Get 360-degree feedback. What could we be doing better here? What are they doing that they could improve on? It’s all about collaboration and working with your suppliers rather than against them. It’s about alignment.

Ask them how you could help them grow your business better. What a fantastic conversation! You both have common goals. The more you grow, the more you’ll buy from them. So how can you be more effective and efficient together?

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Your Clients

Your clients also need to pull their weight to achieve high productivity levels. To successfully carry out your job and achieve the best results for your clients, they also have a job to do. If you need a response to a question before carrying on with a project, you need an answer immediately, not in 5 days. 

Your clients must take ownership of their responsibilities when working together.

Because of this, a business must learn to say no to clients who don’t do this. Spending time with non-ideal clients is a huge opportunity cost – you could spend your time much more profitably. People not in your target market are unlikely to become repeat customers, so think carefully about how – or if – you serve them.

If I’m spending all my time trying to motivate a client who doesn’t want to help himself, I’m missing out on time with a client who wants to move things forward. It is not productive for my clients or me.

How to stop a client and a business supplier from holding you back

From now on, I want you to rate everyone you work with as +1 or -1. If you have too many -1 suppliers on your book, you should have a frank conversation about what they need to do to keep your custom. It is business. If it’s not working, cut them loose and find someone else you can provide the +1 service you need.

If you have too many -1 clients on your books, you need clarity on your target audience. You’re currently finding the wrong people and need to find the right ones. Check out our blog, ‘How to get the most out of your marketing budget,’ for more details.

In my 20+ years of experience building small businesses for myself and as a globally acclaimed business coach for tradies, I have understood the power of investing in ideal customers and top-notch suppliers. Your business deserves it.


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