Valuable Lessons From Lost Clients

We’ve all lost clients. Sometimes it’s our fault. Sometimes it’s theirs. Sometimes it’s out of everyone’s control. 

But no matter the reason, there is always something you can learn from a lost client. A system to review lost clients will help keep your business improving and growing. 

Exit Interview

Typically done when you leave a job, an exit interview is also a great way to review what went right – and what went wrong – during your coaching relationship.

You’ll want to review:

  • The progress your client made
  • What specific advice or tools did not work for her
  • Any personality conflicts
  • Why they are moving on

Important Note: This is not the time to get defensive.

It is the time to gather information.

Be open to her criticism (if there is any) and use the information to genuinely improve your business. 

Be Honest With Yourself

One of the most common reasons for client loss is that the customer is simply not a good fit. Maybe you suspected it when she signed up, or maybe not, but now that she has moved on, ask yourself:

  • What signs were there that she was not the right fit?
  • Why did you ignore any signs that were present?
  • How can you use that information to protect yourself from a less-than-ideal client in the future?

If you can identify a bad client/coach match from the start and decline the work (or better still, refer her to another coach who is a good fit) you’ll find you have a lot less stress in your day-to-day business. 

Misunderstandings

Sometimes, client loss is as simple as a lack of understanding on your client’s part.

Do you clearly state (and have them acknowledge):

  • The schedule of calls/emails?
  • The requirements for scheduling a call?
  • Reporting requirements?
  • Length of your contract?

Do you also have a system for staying in touch with a client who has gone quiet? Sometimes all it takes is a phone call to get your wayward client back on track. Many coaching relationships have been salvaged with a simple phone call or email, so if you haven’t heard from a client in a while, pick up the phone. 

The bottom line is that client loss happens, and it will always happen, but if you can learn from each client, and use the data you are able to glean from it to improve your business, then even a lost client can be turned into new profits, and a better system for improved client acquisition moving forward. 

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