Some of you may know that I set a goal for myself this year to connect with 29 people for 29 cups of coffee in the month of February, which had 29 days…In one of these conversations one person shared a pain-point that mirrors a common business problem,
“something’s shifted in the business, I can’t put my finger on it but I’m not as busy and I’m not get the referrals I used…but I can’t see what’s changed.”
Can you relate? I know I sure can.
We know when something’s shifted, because we can feel it, just like we know when a partner or friend is upset about something, when a customer is not happy – even when they don’t say anything; there is always something there that can point us to the problem behind the pain.
We know because something just feels ‘off’ and that feeling is the same whether we’re in ‘relationship’ with someone or something (inside the business or beyond it) because…
It’s all about the relationship.
At one point in my first Solopreneur endeavour I was working with people therapeutically in yoga and my little yoga business had been growing, slow and steady.
There was a high level of interest in the beginning, which enabled me to continually pick up people with a similar endgame as my first clients and then, about nine months into the adventure, something shifted. I knew something was off.
A couple of clients that had been with me from the very beginning stopped coming; a few who had been generous with sending referrals didn’t anymore and I had taken on a few clients that just kind of felt like sandpaper to work with.
They wanted more of my time and service, they paid well, paid on time, etc., but they just didn’t feel as easy to work with as the majority of my people.
Something had shifted but I just couldn’t put my finger on it.
So I did what many of us might do, I started spending money to acquire new customers; which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. When that didn’t work as well as I’d hoped, I shifted where I was spending my money…and when that didn’t deliver the results I wanted, I started shifting what I was offering.
The point is this…
The shifts I was making to alleviate the pain, weren’t addressing the problem. Why? Because I was trying to fix what was happening inside the business, by shifting things outside of it.
Sometimes, we going after – like a LION – what we think needs to change ‘out there’ and it draws our focus away from seeing what has changed ‘in here’…within the business, in the relationship with the customer/client and with ourselves.
I had stepped back – physically and energetically.
Now, if you have never experienced the ‘energy’ conversation related to Business I understand, it’s NOT something we talk about.
But it IS part of how I talk about Business today, WHY?
Because, it’s all about the Relationship, and…
What draws us toward or repels us away from ‘relationships’ very often happens at a level we can’t really quantify.
We find ourselves saying things like:
“I’m just so tuned into that person” or “They are so NOT on my wavelength” or “I feel so in-sync with him/her…”
Think of it this way, in our personal relationships, we generally don’t pull out a spreadsheet and start to tally up the personality traits we are aligned with or develop some kind of sophisticated algorithm to ‘quantify’ the relation-ability shift. (Though it is curious to think about things like e-Harmony’s “X-number” of points of compatibility or what’s going on in the background when someone swipes left or right.)
We tune in or we tune out. We resonate or we don’t. We lean in or we step back. From the ONE that’s right in front of us.
I was subconsciously or unconsciously stepping back, which caused me to hold myself back from the clients that felt like sandpaper and, it impacted how I showed up for everyone else.
Lion or Lamb?
We know when something’s shifted and so do our clients and customers and the pain is very real; only the problem lies somewhere inside The Relationship Triangle, which as become misaligned. Those misalignments interrupt the ‘flow’:
• between the owner and the customer
• the business and the owner or
• the business and the customer
Some shifts are good, others are not, if you are not creating or experiencing more it may mean taking an overt, ‘outward-focused’ approach (the Lion) but often, everyone involved benefits more (and more quickly) by looking ‘inward’; at the quieter, ‘softer’ shifts inside the business, with the customer or our own approach.
If you’ve felt something shift, have a look back at The Relationship Triangle and see where you feel the misalignment and then consider a relationship solution,
So, are you stepping back or leaning in?
If you are feeling like something is out of alignment and seeing signs pointing toward uncertainty, before you shift, pivot or scrap everything to start from scratch...join me in a 20-minute Calibration Call where I can support you in RECALIBRATING…inside the business or beyond.