Client Feedback Tool
  • Rejection Proof: Move Beyond Fear to Drive Better Project Outcomes

    Posted on November 7th, 2015 Ryan Suydam No comments
    Rejection Proof: Move Beyond Fear to Drive Better Project Outcomes

    What client conversations do you avoid because you fear rejection?

    Jia Jiang, leading authority on rejection, has found a way beyond this harmful fear. And, I want to invite you to attend his webinar on Tuesday, November 17th. Jia is a dynamic speaker and will offer tips to set you free to achieve more in your business (and maybe even your life).

    Jia will share his solution to the constant internal struggle we all face when looking rejection in the eyes. He tells the story of how he found the solution and finally conquered this fear.

    According to Jia, the most important insight he learned while overcoming his fear of rejection: just ASK. If you don’t ask, you reject yourself before you give the other person a chance to say YES.

    Overcome fear of rejectionWhen delivering a project or working with clients, we all give away too much, we undersell our value, and we miss opportunities to succeed because we simply fear our clients saying “no”. Jia will provide actionable steps you and your team can immediately put in practice to get clients saying YES.

    In this webinar Jia shares key insights:

    • Rejection is an opinion – the rejection is theirs, not yours
    • Fear of rejection turns others into adversaries rather than collaborators
    • Giving people the chance to voice their doubts gains their attention and trust
    • Rejection as a tool sharpens our learning, adaptation, and improvement
    • Rejection is sometimes not rejection at all

    Everyone who attends the Webinar on November 17th from 1:30 to 2:30 EDT can win one of ten copies of Jia’s book, Rejection Proof: How I Beat Fear and Became Invincible through 100 Days of Rejection.

    Whether you are responsible for business development, project management, or you are leading a team of individuals, don’t miss this chance to hear Jia live, as he takes our audience on a journey of triumph and self-discovery.

    Jia Jiang is a keynote speaker, author, and the founder of FearBuster. Jia has taken his message to the stage and is now a highly sought-after keynote speaker on how to empower your life by overcoming rejection. His story has been profiled in Bloomberg Business Week, Yahoo News, Forbes, and The Huffington Post. Soon, Jia is turning his “Rejection Therapy” into a highly anticipated television series.

  • I’m Losing Clients and I Don’t Know Why

    Posted on May 27th, 2014 Sally Orcutt No comments

    We’re really pleased to have guest columnist Shari Harley share her insights on creating candid relationships with your clients. Shari is the author of How to Say Anything to Anyone: A Guide for Building Business Relationships that Really Work and is founder and president of Candid Culture, a Denver-based training firm that is bringing candor back to the workplace.

    We’ve all had clients we thought were satisfied, and yet the next month, they’re off our books and we don’t know why. Your clients are under no obligation to tell you why they replaced you. In fact, without establishing the expectations for genuine communication at the outset, it’s easier for clients to disappear than to tell you what they don’t like about your services.

    It’s fine to get fired by a client. You might even make more money, with fewer headaches, if certain clients would take their business elsewhere. But it’s not fine, nor is it necessary, to be surprised by defections. Almost every defection is predictable and preventable when you have candid relationships with all of your clients.

    How can you develop client relationships so that clients will tell you the truth when they’re dissatisfied and give you a chance to retain their business? Here are a few suggestions from my new book, How to Say Anything to Anyone: A Guide to Building Business Relationships that Really Work.

    When kicking off new client relationships, tell your clients what to expect. Say, “We’re excited to be working with you. If we work together long enough, we’re going to make mistakes. We’d like the kind of relationship where you can tell us what is and isn’t working. Please know that we appreciate your feedback, and we’ll say ‘thank you.'”

    When is the last time one of your vendors admitted they’re human, told you up front that they know they’ll make mistakes, genuinely wanted your feedback, and promised not to get defensive when they got it? This kind of open dialogue will make your firm stand out and differentiate you from other equally technically qualified firms.

    The next step in the relationship-building process is to ask your clients questions that your competitors aren’t asking. The conversation might sound something like, “I want to be sure we’re meeting your needs and don’t want to have to guess what’s important to you. Can I ask you a couple of questions?”

    Here are a few questions I suggest asking:

    1. Who else did you consider hiring?
    2. Why did you hire us instead?
    3. How will you know we’re doing a good job? What does success look like?
    4. What are your pet peeves? What could we do that would annoy you?
    5. How often do you want to meet, and what should we discuss during our meetings?
    6. Are you a big-picture person or more detail-oriented?
    7. Do you want to meet in person or over the phone?
    8. How do you like to receive information? Printed, voicemail, email, or via text message?

    You can learn much of the aforementioned information over time by observing your clients’ behavior. But why wait? By the time you’ve observed clients’ preferences, chances are you’ve made mistakes that they aren’t likely to tell you about.

    Asking these questions is not a one-time event. Tell your clients, “I’m going to check in with you several times a year. Know that I genuinely want your honest feedback. We can’t fix problems that we don’t know exist.”

    Then you actually have to ask. Telling a client you’re going to ask for feedback and then not doing so is worse than saying nothing at all. Also, please don’t ask, “How are things going?” “How is it going” is a greeting, not a question. It’s vague. And if you ask a vague question, you’ll get a vague answer.

    Ask specific questions quarterly. Remind your clients that you really want their feedback. Promise them you’ll say “thank you.” If you become defensive – which is a very human and normal thing to do – apologize and do better next time. Every time you make it difficult to tell you the truth, you train people to replace you instead of giving you a chance to retain their business.

    When a senior leader humbles himself and connects directly with clients, this is perceived as a great value by the client. In my experience, clients will tell you the truth when you ask and make it clear that you really want to hear the answers.

    Asking for specific feedback and saying thank you is a true differentiator for your firm. And in my experience, few, if any, business owners are doing it. Not only will you establish stronger relationships with your clients by making it safe to tell you the truth, you’ll set yourself apart from your competitors.

    This guest column previously appeared in The Friedman Files in December 2013. Our thanks to Rich Friedman, Client Feedback Tool partner and President of Friedman & Partners and Shari Harley, president of Candid Culture, for sharing this with us. Client Feedback Tool is a recognized expert in the feedback business, particular for the A/E/C industry. Founded as an extension of an architectural firm, we remain committed to providing useful information to help firms build client loyalty.

    Want additional information on setting up a client feedback program:

    • Register for Complimentary PSMJ/Deltek/CFT Webinar featuring Collins & Burns and McDonnell – June 5 at 1:30 EST
    • Visit our website:
    • Email:
    • Contact us toll free: 1-866-433-7322
  • Uncover what’s hidden (and other tips to increase your firm’s value)

    Posted on April 30th, 2014 Ryan Suydam No comments
    Uncover what's hidden (and other tips to increase your firm's value)

    Increase your Client’s Perception of your value

    You win a project and sit down at the kickoff meeting with your client. You discuss meeting frequency, deliverables, schedule and expectations. Everybody is positive and excited. Your client is convinced they hired the right firm for this project and everybody believes the project will be a success.

    Fast forward several months. You have finished the project and are asking your client to let you know how things went. You are surprised to see that a member of their team gave you a ‘did not meet expectations’ rating on schedule. Sure, there was one set of deliverables that were a week later than originally planned but you and the client’s project manager had discussed this and understood the delays were really due to workload on their side.

    What do you do now? You could go back and explain that the delay was really on their end but that doesn’t seem like such a terrific idea. The reality is, this project is complete and the client’s perception (at least for one individual) is that your firm missed a deadline. It is not possible to go back and undo or adjust this perception.

    Client Feedback Tool recommends that, as a best practice, you measure client expectations throughout a project. Only by capturing client perceptions early can you actively manage those perceptions and change outcomes to everyone’s advantage. Following are 5 advantages of this approach:

    Uncover the hidden. In spite of your best efforts, your client made some assumptions when you began the project that they likely did not share with you. They know what is most valuable to them and just assume you do as well. Measuring client expectations regularly lets you uncover those hidden assumptions, respond to them, and become their expert.

    What’s measured improves. You measure profitability, utilization rates, backlog, etc. Simply by measuring your client’s perceptions throughout the project, you will find their perceptions will improve because your performance will improve. Automatically.

    Builds client-centric culture. Staff know that your firm measures the metrics that are really important. Using an ongoing feedback process to measure client perceptions puts increased focus on client interactions. Staff will have their antennae up, looking for the unusual, and will typically reach out to clients even before you ask for feedback.

    Earlier problem identification. When a problem does arise on a project, the fact that you asked while there was still time to make a course correction decreases future problems and increases your value to the client. In fact, our research has proven that when you ask for feedback and follow up, problems are reduced by 83%.

    Increases staff satisfaction and retention. Most feedback is positive and encouraging. Your clients will demonstrate their appreciation and give you the opportunity to recognize your staff for the good work they do. Research shows that one of key drivers for staff retention is acknowledgment of the individual’s value and contributions. Letting your clients praise your key employees creates a win-win for everyone.

    Want to learn more about asking your clients for feedback, scheduling an online Demo by calling us at 1-866-433-7322 or visiting our website at

  • Do you know how much your clients value your services?

    Posted on March 4th, 2014 Ryan Suydam No comments

    As the premier feedback surveying group for the professional services industry, we
    are gathering anonymous fee and rate setting strategies from firms across the

    By taking the following poll, you will have immediate access to the data
    gathered to help you in your fee and rate setting.

    Confidential Poll
    * Required
    What do your clients really think of your fees? They think.... *
    What do your clients really think of the value you bring to solving their problems? They think... *
    When competing for jobs against other firms, what percentage of the time do you suspect that their fees are at or below their cost? *
    How often are you forced to set your fees at or below your cost? *
    This content is neither created nor endorsed by Google. Report Abuse - Terms of Service - Privacy Policy

    Interested in a final report?
    This poll will remain open for several weeks. If you would like to have the final combined results emailed to you, please send us your email.

  • Firm Metrics + Client Metrics = Success

    Posted on January 7th, 2014 Ryan Suydam No comments
    Firm Metrics + Client Metrics=Success

    As the New Year begins, most businesses, including ours, look for ways to drive even greater success than last year. We’ve all heard Peter Drucker’s quote, “what’s measured improves,” so most of us measure financial metrics regularly to try and drive success. Are we on track to achieve our goals? Is a course correction needed? And if so, what do we need to change?

    If your firm is only measuring financial metrics, are you measuring all the metrics needed to create the success you want to achieve?  If what you measure, improves, what else could you (should you) measure? What else do you want to improve in 2014?

    Take a moment and think about that question.

    So what should you measure?financial growth

    If you are like most A&E firms, you evaluate project performance based largely on the efficiency with which the project is completed. Did your team complete the scope of work in the contract and meet the desired profit targets? Did the team provide the client with expected deliverables — without doing a lot of re-work or free work? Did they match deliverables to the contract and avoid scope creep?

    Measuring project efficiency is essential to success. So is having a streamlined process to completing similar projects. If your teams started from scratch every time they began a project without using what they had learned from previous, similar projects, there is no way they could achieve target profits. Talk about re-inventing the wheel!

    Here’s another question to consider. Does measuring efficiency proactively prevent profit killers like re-work or scope creep? Or is it a reactive measure?

    There is a certain logic to the idea that if each of your teams follows the project delivery process identified for a particular type of project, the outcome would be the same. Each client would receive ‘correct’ deliverables based on the scope outlined in the contract. So why doesn’t it seem to work out that way?

    For nearly ten years we have been working with clients in the A&E industry. We have heard hundreds of stories about projects that should have been successful but weren’t. They had everything. Good staff. Good client. Good process. And yet, the results were often not what they expected.

    No matter how great the project circumstances may be, each client is different, the same client will change over time, and the criteria for success keeps moving.

    Client Feedback Tool focuses on helping our clients achieve the long-term success they desire by measuring all the metrics important to project performance. As the title suggests, this includes measuring both financial metrics and client metrics. Client metrics measure how well your process is meeting your client’s expectations at each stage of the project. If your team is not asking whether their client’s expectations are being met, they are making three dangerous assumptions:

    • Their existing project delivery process will meet the expectations of a new client (or a new project manager for an existing client).
    • There are no external factors that might influence the expectations of a project manager they have worked with before on ‘this project’.
    • You and the client have the same understanding of project communication, deliverables, etc.

    When your firm uses real-time, project-based feedback, you give your clients the opportunity to share their changing preferences and priorities with you throughout the project. You eliminate the assumptions that can result in poor project performance and unmet expectations. You strengthen your relationships with your clients as they realize that you really care about their goals. And, because the feedback you request is designed to benefit your client, you also give them the ability to help you help them achieve the success they desire.

    And the benefit to your firm? You establish a reputation as experts. Elite players. Premium brand. This expert status has powerful financial impact. In addition to reducing or eliminating re-work and scope creep, you become the ‘go to’ firm for each of your clients, who then provide you with a steady stream of profitable work.

    As 2014 gets underway, let’s challenge ourselves. Instead of measuring the same things you have in the past and expecting different results, take the strategic step of tracking the metrics that matter. If what is measured improves, are you measuring the metrics needed to create the success you desire? Request a Live Demo to learn more about measuring client metrics to create firm success or give us a call at 866.433.7322.



  • “Measure What Matters” Client Feedback in the AEC Industry

    Posted on December 17th, 2013 Sally Orcutt No comments

    I would like to thank LeAnn Nowak, Marketing Director at Base Builders, LLC for agreeing to be a guest blogger for Client Feedback Tool. LeAnn recently attended Mike Phillips’ presentation at the PSMJ Industry Summit 2013. In her post, LeAnn shares her thoughts on Mike’s presentation “Firm Metrics + Client Metrics = Growth” and the importance of ‘measuring what matters’.

    I’ve just returned from the PSMJ A/E/C Industry Summit – it was an education filled two days with sessions covering all aspects of business management in the industry.   One of my favorite sessions was regarding measuring client satisfaction led by Mike Phillips, AIA, IIDA the President and Founder of Phillips Architecture and the Client Feedback Tool.Customer-crossword-for-blog

    For the past 20 years I’ve been speaking (and preaching) about measuring metrics – it goes hand in hand with marketing and selling business management software.  It is important for me to relay the message that AEC firms need to know their metrics if they are going to be wildly successful.

    Mike fully agreed with measuring metrics but he put a different spin on it.  He talked about measuring what really matters. Your client feedback.   Why are you in business after all?

    If you are aware of your client expectations and perceptions and realize that they will change then you can improve your value to your clients.   The number one reason that you want to obtain client feedback is to make your client experience better but it can also help you to improve the way you run your overall business and can have a big impact on your staffing and employee relationships.

    Think about it in terms of what is important to your employees – one of the number one reasons that a person leaves a firm is that they feel they are not recognized for their performance. If you are measuring their performance in terms of client satisfaction you will be able to provide them with the recognition they deserve and therefore can improve your retention.  And, the feedback can help you identify future leaders as well.

    Be sure to measure your helpfulness, your responsiveness, the quality, budget, schedule and accuracy of your project deliverables.  Be sure to measure real-time at the project start and through each phase as well as at close out.  Include your employees in the process of gathering the feedback  — you might think that the hardest part of this is gaining your employee buy in but remember this quote from Mike: “Whatever is measured matters. Staff pays attention to what matters.”   If you are using the information you collect then you will prove the value of the information and your team will want to participate.

    While I still fully believe you need to measure the financial indicators in your business – I have also added a new talking point to my “war chest”, let’s all measure client feedback and improve the value we offer.

    Thank you again LeAnn. To learn more about Client Feedback Tool’s integrated client feedback process, visit our website at

    Base Builders, LLC was born out of an electrical engineering practice and focuses solely on the AE industry. To learn more about business/project management software for small firms visit their website at

  • Project Conflict – cause for stress or road to opportunity

    Posted on November 7th, 2013 Sally Orcutt No comments

    If you ask friends or colleagues how they feel about conflict, you will likely know their answer even before they speak. Their body language will tell you immediately. That is because most people view conflict as having to do with arguments, agitation, and to an extreme extent, hostility. But what if we reframe the way we look at conflict? Is there a way to see conflict as an opportunity? What if we accept the fact that conflict is essentially about the gaps in expectations that happen when individuals interact?

    All project teams hit a bump in the road at times when it comes to gaps in client expectations associated with deliverables, communication, or schedule. When this happens, project conflict can occur. There is certainly no magic to ensure this doesn’t happen but there are three actions you can take using feedback to minimize the frequency and to turn these gaps in expectations into an opportunity to learn more about your clients. Orange Man Consultation

    Don’t avoid it or ignore it. Just because you are not aware of the gap between your clients’ expectations and what your team is delivering does not mean that the gap doesn’t exist. Both you and your client make assumptions related to their project every day. You assume that the way you have done 50 projects in the past that are just like this one is the way to progress on this one. Your client may have expectations (or a vision) about what the deliverable will look like that is different than what you are planning. It happens. However, if throughout the project you ask for feedback, you will catch these gaps in expectations as soon as they occur. And, the sooner you and your client have a conversation about the difference in your expectations, the sooner your project gets back on a healthy track.

    Don’t blame anyone. I have heard many A/E/C firms speak of having difficult clients. They say their (clients’) expectations are unrealistic, inconsistent, and that they just expect you to read their minds and know exactly how they want things done. This may be true. But beyond the obvious problem with telling your clients they are wrong, playing the blame game may create an attitude on your team that your clients will pick up on. By looking at project conflict as nothing more than a gap in expectations, you and your team will have the opportunity to learn more about each client. As you solicit feedback from your clients, you will close any gaps in expectations and be recognized as their expert.

    Communication – the great conflict alleviator. You can avoid having conflict escalate or go unresolved, by communicating regularly with your clients. Asking for feedback on a regular basis lets you keep a pulse on whether or not there are any expectation gaps. You will quickly see if there are any issues that need to come to the surface? By asking for feedback and following up, you will keep the channels of communication open. And, you will give your clients the opportunity to share with you their ideas and thoughts about how they would like you to serve them.

    Getting regular feedback lets you build an easy rapport with clients. The Client Feedback Tool process is easy and comfortable for both you and your clients. Integrated into your existing project management system, the feedback you receive provides you with new ideas about your clients’ preferences. We hear a lot about being your client’s trusted advisor. In addition to being their trusted advisor, you will also become the expert at how each individual client prefers to be served. Visit our website to learn more about using feedback as an opportunity to turn conflict into client loyalty and trust.

    Related posts: 3 Ways Client Surveys Build Stronger Relationships, Using Project Feedback to Increase Profitability, An inside look at the numbers – reducing client problems by 83%

  • “I’m gonna make him an offer he can’t refuse.” 3 Lessons you can learn from Don Corleone

    Posted on October 23rd, 2013 Sally Orcutt No comments

    It’s all about what you offer your clients.

    When Don Corleone made his offer, do you think he had his audience’s attention? Was it compelling to his listener?

    Here are 3 lessons you can learn from Don Corleone that will make your offer to your clients compelling enough to get their attention.Lessons from Don Corleone

    Treat people as individuals. The Don knew that people needed to be handled differently. He used fear to motivate some; respect, for others; and a swift kick in the pants for those like Johnny Fontaine. Do you treat all your clients the same? Have you developed project delivery systems that work well for your firm, and you continue to use the exact same system for all client project managers? Have you ever found yourself in a situation that required re-work or resulted in scope creep because your process did not meet some of those individuals’ expectations? When you treat each client project manager as an individual, and ask whether your process works for them, you build a bond with each one. The next time a project is coming up, this bond will ensure you get the chance to discuss the new work (and probably the inside scoop as well).

    Keep your word. The Don was no saint, but when he gave his word, everyone knew he could be counted on to keep it. Can your clients say the same? Have any of your project managers ever ‘over promised’ and ‘under delivered’? Has there ever been a different interpretation on what the final deliverable would be? Have you ever found out about this only after the project was complete and there was no opportunity to make a course correction? If you had asked at each milestone of the project whether your deliverables were ‘what they expected’, would that have made your client happier? Clients want solutions and they look to your firm to provide them. Knowing that your firm will ask them if their expectations are being met while there is still a chance to change course if needed, gives your clients the confidence that when you make an offer, they can count on you.

    Two ears and one mouth. The Don always listened carefully and didn’t do too much talking. He would sometimes ask for clarification, but he never interrupted. Are you listening to your clients? Are you giving them enough opportunities during the course of working with them to share their preferences so you can deliver on their expectations? Keeping open dialogue between you and your clients is essential to getting their attention (when you need it). You may feel that you are staying in touch with your client throughout their project because you give them regular updates. But is that dialogue? Are you sharing information with them? Or, are you asking them to share information with you?

    Our client feedback system is all about you – our client! It is process-based and integrates seamlessly into your existing project delivery system. We understand you don’t need ‘one more thing to do.’ And, we are committed to working with you to fit feedback into your culture to help you achieve your profitability goals. Contact us today. You can call us toll free at 866.433.7322, email us at or visit our website to see how are system works and get an overview of the process we’ll use when we help you create your plan!

    We look forward to having a dialogue with you!

  • Using Project Feedback to Increase Profitability

    Posted on October 9th, 2013 Ryan Suydam No comments

    Achieving consistent project profitability while maintaining strong client relationships is at the top of most firms’ goals and objectives. And, while there are certainly a number of variables that must be integrated to make this happen, asking your clients for feedback during the project plays a valuable role. I’ve identified two scenarios that are common in the A/E industry. Incorporating feedback into your project management process has been demonstrated to have a positive impact on growth

    Reduce (or eliminate) Re-work

    Streamlining the project delivery process is essential to creating project efficiencies that lead to increased profit on your job. But there are pitfalls to this approach unless you are getting regular project feedback from your clients. Let’s look at a scenario:

    You have done projects for one of your best clients for more than 10 years. You have developed a delivery process that seems to be working for them and it eliminates the need for your team to reinvent the wheel each time. Enter the new client project manager. This individual has their own set of expectations regarding how this project will proceed. And, although you all believe you were aligned when you left the kick-off meeting, suddenly there are 10 pages of comments to your first major submittal. They don’t like the format, they feel you have left out critical information, and generally they are looking for you to fix the problem which will require some significant re-work on your team’s part.

    How could project feedback have avoided this outcome? Firms that have integrated gathering feedback into their project management process understand the importance of requesting feedback after each milestone meeting or deliverable. In this scenario, a feedback request would have been sent after the initial meeting perhaps after the submission of the meeting minutes. This would give the project manager the opportunity to uncover gaps in expectations with this new project manager. Before his team began to move forward on the project, these gaps can be closed. In this scenario this would have meant deviating from the streamlined process at least a little, but that knowledge and flexibility would save many hours of re-work that kills a project budget.

    Avoid Scope Creep

    Scope creep is something most A/E firms understand all too well. You know what is needed to complete the project but the client is extremely cost conscious and asks you to remove several items to lower your fee. Depending upon the experience of the project manager involved, they may be able to complete the project to the client’s satisfaction. However, doing so will quite likely result in a lower profitability for your project. Let’s look at a scenario:

    You have been asked to design a renovation for a commercial building for a new client. This type of work is your specialty. You know all of the elements that will be needed to meet your client’s expectations for a successful project. However, when the client asks you to remove about 5% – 10% of the scope so that your fee will fit into their budget, you agree because this is a client that you really want to work with and your staff is a little light on work at the moment as well. As the project progresses, you run into problems because of the scope you removed and the client ‘forgets’ they asked you to remove these items and asks you to do what is needed to complete the project. Rather than ask your client for an increase in fee, you just finish the project with the fee you have been given. This involves both you and your team working extra hours and your profit still takes a hit.

    How could project feedback have avoided this outcome? Because this is a new client let’s assume that the opportunities to use feedback to avoid the fee reduction in the first place are limited. Requesting feedback from your client throughout the lifecycle of the project however, can play a significant role when the scope items you removed come back into play. Each time you send a feedback request to this client you are giving them the opportunity to let you know how well you efforts are matching their expectations. You are building the relationship with them that lets them know that you value your relationship with them and it is your goal to ensure the project outcome meets or exceeds their expectations. When the moment comes that the scope items you agreed to remove become essential to the project, this relationship will make the conversation to request additional fees more comfortable for both of you.

    Do either of these scenarios sound familiar to you? Visit our website or email us at to discuss how project feedback might increase your profitability metrics.

  • “I just love working with you…” Really?

    Posted on September 16th, 2013 Ryan Suydam No comments

    Your firm is committed to using client evaluation surveys to ensure project success. So what do you do when your client gives you all high marks and you just know it isn’t true?

    Recently one of our clients shared a story with me in which she was faced with this situation. Megan had been working on a project for Dee for several months. During this time there were a lot of times – certainly more than typical – when Dee came back with comments like, ‘well, that is fine but…’ Megan continued to feel that as hard as she tried to meet Dee’s expectations, there was something that was just not adding up.

    For a number of years, Megan’s firm had elected to use client evaluation surveys. As a result, and because Megan really wanted to create a successful project for Dee, she decided to send her a survey. The survey asked Dee to consider specific points in the project process. It gave her a chance to share her thoughts on how things were going. The goal of the survey was to hear what Dee felt was important and to allow Megan to uncover what processes Dee felt were working well and which ones might be adjusted to work a little more smoothly.

    Much to her surprise, the survey came back with all top scores and the comment, “I just love working with Megan!” Holding Blank Score Cards

    Since her purpose was not to receive accolades but to serve her client more successfully, Megan set up a meeting with Dee to discuss the feedback results. She told her she really appreciated her taking the time to complete the client evaluation survey but she was a little concerned with the high scores. She told Dee, “I really enjoy working with you as well but I just feel that there is some way in which I could be serving you better.” Dee told her that she gave her the high marks because she knew other people would be looking at the scores. She said she really did like working with Megan and didn’t want her to get into any trouble.

    Megan thanked Dee and told her she really appreciated her thinking of her. She was quick to add, however, that she (and her firm) actually appreciate knowing what their clients are thinking even if the survey comes back saying that the client is not completely happy with something. She pointed out that the reason her firm uses client evaluation surveys is because they are committed to providing their clients with the best possible experience.

    So how does the story end? Megan and Dee had an excellent conversation. They talked about the processes Megan was using on the project and agreed on a few minor adjustments that Dee felt would really work a little better for her. In the end, the client evaluation survey actually worked just as intended. It opened the door to an excellent conversation.

    Check out more about the benefits of asking your clients how you can serve them even better.