Friday, April 24, 2009

The Six Lists #2

In the previous post, we looked at listing the clients that were: 1) your favorites, most profitable, most appreciative and also 2) those that weren't favorites, were not profitable, not appreciative of your work.

I did that years ago and at first felt elated--it was amazing to see that I really only had two types of clients. However, my emotions plummeted when I looked at the "bad" list and noticed it was a much longer list than the "good" one. To further kick me in the gut, I was also initially confused--what made a client "good"?

Here's what to do after you make your lists. First, identify what the "good" clients have in common. In our case, those clients all sold through sales channels such as dealers or distributors. That became my company's niche. We haven't wavered from it since.

Second, do the math. If you eliminate the "bad" clients, what will happen? Ideally, you'll have more time to spend on the good ones and will lose little to no profit saying goodbye to them.

If that's the case, set out to eliminate those clients. Do it with respect to them. But don't be surprised if it's not a big deal to them--after all, they weren't all that knocked out by your company.

Now you know your niche and you have more time to focus on getting clients that fit it. What could be better?

Barry LaBov, CEO
LaBov & Beyond

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