Lead management success: 5 questions I ask every new OBM lead

Lead management success: 5 questions I ask every new OBM lead

The 5 Essential Questions Every OBM Should Ask Their Leads 

In today’s buzzing online world, being a pro at managing potential clients can mean the difference between your online business taking off or just muddling through? Well, as an Online Business Manager (OBM), I’ve found that one of the keys to really nailing it is all about asking the right questions. It’s kind of like being a detective, sussing out whether a lead is going to be a good match for your business or not.

So, I thought I’d put together this handy guide, packed full of tips from my own experience. I’ll walk you through the five must-ask questions for any OBM chatting with potential clients, and we’ll chat about why these questions are super important for acing lead management.

But hey, I won’t just leave you with the questions! I’ll also give you some down-to-earth tips and step-by-step actions that you can start using right away to up your lead management game. Ready to dive in?

The 5 Key Questions

Here are the five key questions that I always like to ask when I’m chatting with potential clients. It’s a bit like speed dating for business. 

  • Question 1: What’s happening in your business right now?
  • Question 2: What’s the big push or problem that made you reach out for help?
  • Question 3: When do you need things done by?
  • Question 4: What’s the budget you’re working with?
  • Question 5: What are you aiming to achieve?

Let’s dig in and see why these questions are like the golden ticket for successful lead management.

The Current Business Scenario

Question 1: What’s happening in your business right now?

This question is like opening Pandora’s box, but in a good way. When you ask a potential client about what’s going on in their business, they’re probably going to spill the beans on what’s really bugging them. The things they’re grappling with, the challenges that are giving them sleepless nights, and so on. It’s like having a sneak peek into how you can swoop in with your services and help them out.

Remember, the key here is to really get a feel for what’s going down in their business. It’s all about getting them to open up about their biggest challenges, their victories, or maybe the dragons they’re trying to slay. When they lay all this out on the table, you’ll have a pretty good idea of how you can step in and lend a hand.

Don’t play the guessing game or jump to conclusions about what they might need. Let them spill the beans on what’s really causing them a headache or what they’re shooting for. Their answers are like your treasure map, leading you to the perfect solution that’s custom-made for their needs.

Tip: 💡Keep this question nice and open. Let them pour out everything that’s on their mind. You’ll be surprised at the kind of useful stuff they’ll reveal – all those little insights into what their business is crying out for.

After you’ve asked the initial open-ended question, “What is happening in your business at the moment?” and received a response, consider these actions:

  • Take notes: Detail is key here, so make sure you document everything they’re telling you. This information will prove useful in tailoring your services to their specific needs.
  • Follow-up questions: Don’t hesitate to ask more questions for clarity. This will show the client that you’re interested and actively engaged in their situation.


The Urgency Behind the Call for Help

Question 2: What’s the big push or problem that made you reach out for help?

We all have those “I’ve had it!” moments, right? When you feel like you’re banging your head against a wall, and something’s gotta give. That’s usually when we reach out for help. Well, businesses have those moments too.

So, when a potential client gets in touch, it’s essential to find out what their “I’ve had it” moment was. Was there a recurring issue that they just couldn’t sort out? Or perhaps a goal they’ve been chasing, but just can’t seem to reach? Knowing this helps you get a grasp on what’s really driving them to seek help.

Here’s a little advice: Dig deep into what really triggered them to reach out. Knowing this gives you a cheat sheet on how to tailor your services so it speaks to them on an emotional level, creating a connection that goes beyond just business.

Clients don’t just wake up one day and decide they need an Online Business Manager. There’s usually something that’s been nagging at them – maybe it’s an ongoing frustration or a goal that keeps slipping away. And it’s this very thing that sends them on a search for professional help.

Understanding why a client decided to reach out to you can be like finding a gold mine. It offers insights into what’s valuable to them and the issues they’re trying to solve. And the more you understand their concerns, the better equipped you are to provide a solution that not only meets their needs but also wows them.

Tip: 💡So what do you do once you’ve got all this precious info? Here are a few steps:

  • Connect the dots: Look for any patterns or recurring themes in the issues they’re facing. This can give you a clearer understanding of what’s really going on beneath the surface and help you offer solutions that hit the mark.
  • Acknowledge their struggle: It’s important to show that you understand their frustrations. Let them know that their feelings are valid. This can go a long way in building trust, which is the foundation of any strong client relationship.

The Deadline Dilemma

Question 3: When do you need this done by?

Let’s talk about time, specifically deadlines. Deadlines can be a bit like a game of tug-of-war. On one side, you’ve got your prospective client’s expectations, and on the other, there’s the reality of what you can deliver and how quickly you can do it.

Just like in tug-of-war, the trick is to find a balance. You’ve got to figure out if the client’s deadline matches up with the amount of work they need done and whether you can realistically deliver on time. It’s a straightforward question, but boy, can it save you a lot of headache down the line.

Here’s a little nugget of wisdom: Use this question to set the stage for an open, respectful relationship with your potential client. It’s not just about whether you can meet their deadline. It’s also about making sure they’re realistic about what can be achieved in the given timeframe.

There’s something else to consider, too. It’s not only about whether the client’s deadline is doable. It’s also about whether their expectations fit with the reality of the work you provide. If a client wants a job done in two days, but realistically, it’s going to take a week, it’s vital to nip that in the bud and manage expectations from the get-go.

Tip: 💡Have a chat about deadlines early on. This shows that you respect the client’s time (and your own), and it can help steer clear of any disappointment or tension down the line because of unmet expectations.

When it comes to deadlines, here are a few things to bear in mind:

  • Check your calendar: Before you agree to a deadline, take a good look at your other commitments and your workload. Promising more than you can deliver will only lead to let-downs.
  • Speak up: If the deadline seems too tight, don’t be afraid to say so. Suggest a more realistic timeline that works better for you, but still meets the client’s needs. Remember, it’s all about finding a balance.

Evaluating Commitment: The Budget

Question 4:  What’s the budget you’re working with?

Okay, let’s dive into the deep end and talk about money, specifically budget. Yes, I know it can be a tad awkward, but trust me, it’s crucial to bring up early in the chat. Knowing a client’s budget gives you a sense of whether they’re serious about your services or if they’re just window-shopping.

If a lead’s budget doesn’t align with your rates, then it might be best for both parties to know this upfront. It’s all about saving you time and energy in the long run, my friend.

Here’s the game plan: Summon your courage and pop the budget question early. Sure, it may cause a slight squirm, but it’s way better than investing a ton of time in a lead that doesn’t match up financially.

Remember, it’s not just about figuring out if they can afford your services. It’s also about gauging how serious they are about their commitment. Understanding their budget can help you decide whether the lead is worth your time and effort.

Tip: 💡It’s worth it to have the budget chat early on. It could save you both a whole lot of time and keep you from any potential miscommunication down the line.

After broaching the budget topic, consider doing the following:

  • Show Your Pricing Cards: Be upfront about your rates to avoid any future “gotcha!” moments. Nobody likes hidden surprises when it comes to money.
  • Talk Value: Make sure the potential client gets the value they’ll receive for their buck. Break down your services, explain what they entail, and show how they align with what the client needs.

The Vision Conversation

Question 5: What are you aiming to achieve?

Alright, we’re on the home stretch now. Here’s the last, but certainly not the least, question – what’s the dream, buddy? What are you looking to accomplish? Knowing what a potential client hopes to achieve gives you a sneak peek into their grand vision, their big endgame. This can help you figure out where your services fit into their grand scheme of things and how you can help turn their dreams into reality.

The action plan here: Get your lead to spill their big goals and dreams for their business. This information helps you line up your services with their vision. But remember, not every vision will align with what you offer, and that’s okay. If there’s a mismatch, it’s a chance for you to point them towards someone else in your network who might be a better fit.

Aim for the Stars: What Do They Want to Accomplish?

To wrap it up, ask about what they’re gunning for with their business. What’s their dream? By understanding their big goals, you can see how your services can fit in and help make their dreams come true.


Tip: 💡Keep the talk focused on what’s coming. Chatting about their vision gives you the opportunity to suggest strategies and ways you can help them reach those goals. 

  • Aim for the Stars: What Do They Want to Accomplish?
  • Connect the Dots: Show them how your services can help them get to where they want to be. This demonstrates your value and shows them that you’re in it to win it with them.
  • Share Past Victories: If you’ve helped clients with similar goals before, share those stories. This can boost their confidence in what you offer and show them you’ve got the chops.

And… that’s a wrap!

By weaving these questions and action steps into your chat with potential clients, you’re already on the winning team. But remember, it’s not just about throwing the right questions their way, it’s also about what you do with the answers you get. This combo of smart questions and actions sets you up for success in the ever-buzzing world of online business.

So, to sum it up, mastering the art of managing potential clients is your ticket to a smooth ride in the digital business world. The five big questions we’ve covered – understanding their business, figuring out what’s driving them, checking out their deadlines, discussing the dollars, and exploring their big dream – these are the building blocks of your strategy.

lip these questions into your chats with potential clients to build real connections. And remember, don’t just hear their answers – really listen and respond appropriately.

Here’s a guide to help you get started:

  • Tune in: Active listening helps you really get what the client needs and builds trust.
  • Show you get it: Let them know you understand their struggle and you’re all in to help them get over their hurdles.
  • Spill the beans about your services: Break down how what you offer can solve their problems and move them closer to their goals.
  • Keep it real: If their deadline or budget doesn’t fit with what you can handle, be upfront about it. It’s better to set these limits now instead of letting down a client later on.

With these steps in your toolkit, you’re all set to build a rock-solid process that doesn’t just snag clients but also builds lasting relationships. Remember, asking the right questions is a game-changer – it opens the door to understanding your clients’ needs and is a huge step towards your success. So go ahead, toss these questions and tips into your chat, and watch your business boom.

Want to convert more leads for your OBM Business?

We’ve got just the resource for you.

Embark on your path to becoming a six-figure Online Business Manager with our comprehensive FREE roadmap. Gain insights into key strategies, and build the confidence needed to align your service with the value you bring. Don’t wait.

Hungry for more? Yearning to fast-track your journey to a successful, 6-figure OBM career? Our OBM Academy is here for you. Gain access to exclusive support, invaluable resources, and the tools you need to sharpen your skills and elevate your OBM career. Don’t miss this opportunity.
Follow along with the transcript

Lead management success: 5 questions I ask every new OBM lead

Leanne Woff: [00:00:00] Hello, hello, hello! Welcome to the latest episode of the Audacious OBM. I’m Leanne Woff and [00:01:00] today we are talking all things leads management success. The five questions I ask every new OBM lead. Now, I wanted to share this with you as it came from a question from one of my students in OBM Academy, and it’s around the leads process and how much information is too much information.

And when do we ask what? So in my true style, I went back with exactly what I do in my business and what I have always done for years. And I believe it works really well. So there are five questions, and I believe these five questions give me enough information and insight into what my potential new clients are experiencing right now and where they want to go to.

And that usually gives me enough information to tell me [00:02:00] whether I can help them or not, without having a hundred different things that they have to give me. In this episode, I’m going to cover off the five. The first, what is happening in your business at the moment? So it seems very basic, tell me what’s happening, but the reason I ask this, the insight you will gain is what is the most pressing for them, the make or breaks.

So the beauty of an open ended question like this, is that they will tell you whatever is at the forefront of their mind. So they could say, Oh, in my business, I have 27 clients and I make a hundred million dollars. And we just got a new logo created, [00:03:00] or they can say, I’m really frustrated. I was trying to get my team to launch a new program, and I just couldn’t get them to work together, and then I didn’t sell any spots, and I just know I can’t do this anymore.

They’re going to tell you exactly what they’re experiencing, and the crucial pieces of information that usually tie into how you need to help them. It gives you a little bit of background, and what the pivot point is, which then brings me to the next question, which is what was the push or problem causing you to reach out for help?

Now, a lot of the time when people actually send me an inquiry, they call or they send me an email. It’s not the first time they’ve thought [00:04:00] about getting support in their business. It’s not the first time they’ve thought about maybe I need an online business manager. Usually it’s out of frustration or something that has happened repeatedly or something that they want so badly and something else has reminded them of it.

And this is really important for us to know because there’s emotion behind it. And so what asking this question gives us is, insight into what irritates them the most, what is, causing maximum pain or a desire that they want so badly that they’ve actually taken action to try and fulfill that.

So it’s telling you what matters to them, what matters to them, that matters to you right now. And it also tells you. What you need to [00:05:00] be able to resolve or what you need to be able to bring to life to then have a satisfied client. Okay, number three, what is your deadline? This question is purely about practicality.

So it’ll also give you insight into whether this client, perspective client is realistic or unrealistic or just has no clue. So it’s, it’s about seeing, okay, hey, let me know, because if you’re expecting me to reply, onboard you and have this job done in two days, the likelihood is it’s not going to happen.

And a lot of the time when I ask people what their deadline is, they’ll either give me a, like a solid date that’s in three months time, [00:06:00] or they’ll say, oh, I’m looking to onboard someone within the next few weeks and then hoping to get started by this day. Or they’ll say, I’m not really sure. And that’s okay too.

They don’t have to know. It is more about starting that conversation. And there’s a bonus advantage of this question. And that is you’re setting up the conversation to be a two way relationship. Your time matters. And my time matters. If your deadline is then that doesn’t necessarily mean I’m automatically going to say, yes, sure.

I actually need to know the deadline so I can see if that’s going to work for me. And it becomes a conversation and mutual respect.

Then we’re looking for, next question. What budget are you working with? Now this one tends to make people uncomfortable and a lot of online [00:07:00] business managers are too scared to ask. But it’s really important because the insight it gives us is the quality of the lead. Are they just tyre kickers and how much time should I as a service provider really sink into this lead?

Because I could talk to them and spend an hour and come up with a plan just to find out that they wanted to spend 50 dollars and they’ve already spoken to six other people and they found someone who can do it for 5 dollars. And so they’re not really interested and I have just wasted a big bunch of time and I don’t want to waste my time and I don’t want to waste their time.

So this helps you gauge where they’re sitting at the moment and what’s important to them because we want leads and clients who align with us and our values and who genuinely want a partner they can work with. [00:08:00] Someone who is skilled and talented, not just the cheapest person there is.

Then the final question, what are you trying to achieve? What are your burning desires for your business? This gives them the opportunity to tell you their big picture. It gives you insight into their overall vision. And then it helps you see where you could potentially slot in and help them achieve that vision.

We’re online business managers. It’s our job to pull things together so that we can get closer to that vision and closer to that vision. And for us to do that, we need to know what it is. And you might find by just knowing what that vision actually is. You can retrospectively start putting pieces together and go, okay if that’s where we want to go, I’m going to need this.

We’re going to need this. And have we tried this [00:09:00] and all of a sudden you get a feeling and you’ll get a feeling of, oh, this is exciting. And yeah, I can see that. And you get invested or you go, no, that’s not really what I’m about. That actually feels quite uncomfortable. And that tells you straight away that this lead.

Isn’t for you, but hey, you might know someone who you think that is this kind of person, that OBM would totally love this gig. And then you can refer them on and how cool is that? You avoid the misalignment and the friction that comes from that. You help somebody else out in your network, which I think is pretty cool.

So they’re my five questions and they are the five questions I send to everybody. I send them via email. I let them have a little think. And then once they’ve been able to answer that, I book in a call. And then I talk to them. And usually I talk through these questions again, so [00:10:00] I can get more of an answer and hear their tone and things like that.

But from this, I know if I’m the right kind of person for them, and if it is worth both of us spending more time chatting and getting to know each other. So if you are trying to establish a leads process, and do it a little bit more efficiently and effectively then these five questions, take them, use them, trust me.

Have a great day everybody. I’ll see you next week.



The Day It All Turned to Poo

The Day It All Turned to Poo

Navigating Burnout and the Path to Recovery When Your Business Hits Rock Bottom

When you embark on your business journey, nobody warns you about the potential lows you may face amidst the highs. Every journey is unique, and as entrepreneur Leanne Woff beautifully illustrates in her podcast episode titled “The Day It All Turned to Poo”, every pitfall and hurdle in your path can become an opportunity for growth. It’s a brave tale of resilience, burnout, and ultimate redemption. 

“Even if the worst things happen, you can always turn it around. I know I did.

This episode shares:

  • Recognising the dangers of being a people pleaser
  • The perils of perfectionism and high drive
  • Coping mechanisms and setting boundaries
  • Responding to personal crises while running a business
  • Constructing a recovery plan for business burnout

Recognising the Dangers of Being a People Pleaser

Being a people pleaser can feel like a double-edged sword. It’s a trait that propelled my business forward as I took immense pride in satisfying my clients’ needs. Yet, it came at the expense of my own well-being. I found myself chronically over-committing, barely able to catch my breath between tasks, unable to utter a simple “No”. This inability to set boundaries began to take a toll on both my personal and professional life.

Tip: 💡Practice saying “No” to tasks and commitments that overload your schedule or impinge on your work-life balance. It might be uncomfortable initially, as it was for me, but over time you’ll realise it’s a vital tool for safeguarding your mental health and improving productivity. Don’t let people-pleasing drive you to burnout. Put your well-being first.


The Perils of Perfectionism and High Drive

Embrace failure as an opportunity for learning. Don’t let perfectionism stifle your creativity or hinder your progress. Instead, view each mistake as a stepping stone towards success.

As a passionate and committed entrepreneur, my drive and perfectionism initially seemed like assets. However, the relentless pursuit of flawlessness started to create an internal struggle. I constantly sought excellence in every task, unable to accept anything less than perfection. If something wasn’t exactly right, I perceived it as a personal failure.

This mindset took a heavy toll on my mental and emotional wellbeing. Every unmet expectation, every less-than-perfect outcome turned into a stressor, holding me back from embracing new opportunities. Fear of failure overshadowed the thrill of exploration and innovation. Instead of experimenting with novel approaches to grow my business, I was caught up in the mire of tiny imperfections.

The day came when I realised that my fear of failure and obsession with perfectionism were acting as significant roadblocks to my business growth. They were not just impacting me but also stifling the potential of my business. What was meant to ensure quality and excellence was turning into a barrier for creativity, innovation, and risk-taking.

Action: 🎯 It is essential to embrace the concept that everything doesn’t have to be perfect. Mistakes are not signs of weakness or incompetence; they are opportunities for learning and growth. Growth and innovation often come from stepping out of our comfort zones, taking risks, and learning from our failures. So, don’t let the fear of failure or the quest for perfection hold you back. Embrace the beauty of imperfection, use mistakes as stepping stones, and always strive to keep moving forward.

Coping Mechanisms and Setting Boundaries

In my life, I’ve always been one to wear many hats – entrepreneur, mother, wife, friend. But there was a time when these roles began to blur and overwhelm me, leading to a personal crisis that greatly affected my business operations.

It started with a series of unfortunate personal events that hit me like a whirlwind. The sudden illness of a loved one, a global pandemic, and some financial instability sent my life into a tailspin. My stress levels skyrocketed, and my ability to focus on my business took a backseat. I was trying to navigate through this personal crisis while simultaneously maintaining the same level of commitment and productivity at work. It felt like I was walking a tightrope, and the slightest slip would lead to a hard fall.

During this period, I learned some valuable lessons about resilience, setting boundaries, and the importance of mental health. I recognised that my current coping mechanisms were inadequate, and if I wanted to keep my business running while managing personal life, I needed to establish firm boundaries between my personal and professional life.

Tip: 💡It is crucial to implement firm boundaries between your personal life and business. This could mean setting specific working hours and sticking to them, not checking work emails during family time, or ensuring you take regular breaks throughout the day for relaxation and self-care. Prioritise your mental health by incorporating self-care practices into your routine, such as meditation, exercise, or engaging in a hobby. Also, don’t underestimate the power of mental health days. Sometimes, taking a day off to recharge can make a world of difference. Remember, it’s not just about surviving; it’s about thriving, and that requires balance.

Responding to Personal Crises While Running a Business

Let me tell you, juggling personal crises while running a business is no small task. In my case, I was hit with a series of personal losses, one after the other. My heart felt heavy with grief and the normal daily routine I had once enjoyed began to feel like an insurmountable mountain.

This series of events shifted my perception of life drastically. It felt as though I was living under a cloud of constant gloom. My optimism, a characteristic I’d always been proud of, seemed to be slipping away. The enthusiasm with which I had once run my business was replaced with a constant sense of exhaustion and overwhelm. It didn’t take long before I hit business burnout.

In that moment of despair, I had to be brutally honest with myself. I had to face the fact that I was not alright and that it was okay to admit it. This honesty, coupled with vulnerability, gave me the courage to step back from my business temporarily and reevaluate my approach. It wasn’t an easy decision, and it definitely didn’t come without guilt, but it was a necessary one.

Action: 🎯If you find yourself in the midst of a personal crisis, remember, it’s alright to take a pause. Reach out to a trusted friend, family member, or mentor, someone who can offer perspective and guidance during your tough times. This person can provide a fresh viewpoint and emotional support, which can be incredibly helpful. Don’t shy away from taking a temporary step back from your business if necessary. It may feel like a setback, but remember, it’s a move towards your overall well-being. Your business will only thrive when you do, and it will surely benefit from your renewed focus and energy in the long run.

Constructing a Recovery Plan for Business Burnout

“And then I created a plan so that this would never happen again. I did not want this to tank my reputation, to tank my clients businesses, I did not want this to be an ongoing reality.”

Dealing with business burnout requires more than just a few days off work. In my case, I realised that I needed a comprehensive recovery plan to truly get back on my feet. This wasn’t a simple band-aid solution, but a complete overhaul of my business operations.

Firstly, I took a critical look at my pricing structure. I realised that I was underpricing my services, which was causing me to overwork and still not achieve the financial results I desired. So, I made the necessary adjustments to reflect the true value of my services.

Next, I redefined my client base. I had been trying to be everything to everyone, which was not only draining but also ineffective. By refining my target audience, I was able to focus on what I do best and serve my clients better.

One of the most important parts of my recovery plan was setting personal boundaries. I made it a rule to not let work spill over into my personal life, no matter how demanding the situation. I started to prioritise my well-being and made sure to carve out time for myself every day.

Lastly, I sought external support. I got myself a business coach, someone who could provide objective insights and keep me accountable. This helped me stick to my recovery plan and avoid falling back into old habits.

Tip: 💡 If you’re feeling burnt out, I strongly encourage you to create a personalised recovery plan that directly addresses your unique business challenges. This might involve restructuring your business operations, seeking external support, or setting new business goals. It’s all about finding what works for you and creating a sustainable business model that respects your limits and prioritises your well-being.

Wrapping it up

Hitting rock bottom in business isn’t a life sentence, but rather a turning point towards a healthier, more sustainable business practice. My story is an honest portrayal of resilience, acceptance, and transformation, offering valuable insights for anyone facing challenges in their entrepreneurial journey. Remember, it’s not just about the fall but more importantly about the rise after the fall. Embrace your journey, every high and low, for it molds you into the entrepreneur you are destined to be.


Hitting rockbottom with your OBM Business?

We’ve got just the resource for you.

Embark on your path to becoming a six-figure Online Business Manager with our comprehensive FREE roadmap. Gain insights into key strategies, and build the confidence needed to align your service with the value you bring. Don’t wait.

Hungry for more? Yearning to fast-track your journey to a successful, 6-figure OBM career? Our OBM Academy is here for you. Gain access to exclusive support, invaluable resources, and the tools you need to sharpen your skills and elevate your OBM career. Don’t miss this opportunity.
Follow along with the transcript

E14 The day it all turned to poo

 [00:00:00] Hey, hey, everybody, welcome to today’s episode of The Audacious OBM. I’m Leanne Woff, and today [00:01:00] I want to talk to you about a personal story. I have called this episode, The Day It All Turned to Poo. I know, charming, right? But it’s true. I want to talk to you about a time where I was probably the lowest point in my business, and I want to talk to you about what led me there and then what I did to turn it around.

I’m a big believer in being honest and being open and that we’re people that run businesses and life is never just smooth for anybody. And as people, things come up and we have to deal with them and it does impact our businesses because we’re very intertwined, even if we try not to be. Now, for me to fully explain to you what happened, there’s a couple things [00:02:00] you need to know about me.

Biggest one is that I’m a people pleaser. I always have been. I remember when I was a teenager and I would go to youth group and I made all different connections there. And one of my… Favorite leaders there, we went through a phase where she said to me, Leanne, you need to use the N word and like, what, what is she talking about?

Leanne, you need to learn to say no. You don’t always have to say yes. You can say no, and that’s okay, and so I want you to practice saying no, and so as a teenager, but over the next, couple of years, I’d be talking to her about different things that are happening in life, and she would say to me, Leanne, you need to use the [00:03:00] n word, and I would have to remember, oh.

Yeah. Okay. I can do that. I can do that. And then when I did and I started putting boundaries in place and I started saying no to different things for me, it was a big deal. And so I would go back to her and say, Sally, Sally, I said no. And then tell her what had happened was this big celebration, right? So it’s always something that I found really hard is to disappoint people or for what I believe or perceive is disappointing people.

The other thing that you need to know about me is I’m a perfectionist. At least I used to be, and I’m incredibly driven. I like to achieve things. And, you know, to the point where when I was older, so let’s move on from teenage years, I was going to the psychologist. [00:04:00] And she gave me homework. And the homework was to fail on purpose, which I just thought was ludicrous.

Why on earth would I do that? Oof. Where is the benefit here? And she wanted me to sit with how uncomfortable I felt doing that. And see that on the other side of it, nothing really changed. Even if I failed, even if I disappointed someone, if I was late to an appointment, nothing happened. And that’s okay.

So it was a big… Process of shifting my perspective as I’ve gone along in life.

So, I then continued. I went on my merry way. I built my business and it was all going, good. [00:05:00] And then life happened, like a tornado, and I had a series of events that occurred very close together that threw everything out of whack. So I, my six week old nephew died. My uncle died. These are people that were so entwined in my life that it had a massive impact.

My six week old nephew dying triggered my niece coming to live with me, it was one, it, there were all these things that had these offshoots and it was like such extreme circumstances . A few years before that, my mom had been hit by a bus, a truck, sorry, a truck, she got hit by a truck and I’m just like, this does not happen in real life, but it does.

So these things compounded and the reality of them was [00:06:00] unbearable and intense. And that became my new baseline. My baseline for existing was to expect that life was going to be that intense, which is a very skewed view. And at the time I had no idea. I had no idea that that’s what I had done or that’s how I was trying to cope with everything.

I was just, I just continued to work, continue to do what I thought needed to be done and tried to process my emotions outside of all of that. To be honest, it was a very bad choice. But I didn’t know at the time. And then I remember having a conversation with one of my clients, who is incredible. She is amazing.

And [00:07:00] she said to me, I need you to realize this. I’m taking things off you. You are so far beyond burnout that you can’t even see it anymore. And it was like I had been smacked in the face. I was devastated. Absolutely gutted. Not because someone has said these mean things about me that’s not what I’m meaning, but it was the reality she was right, and the entire premise of my business and of what I do is to be supportive, to relieve pressure, to help people expand and grow, and I’ve just been told I was doing the opposite, [00:08:00] and that my standard wasn’t my normal standard, I was missing things.

My perception was different. What is going on here? And I couldn’t keep going that way. That was the truth of it. And so I stopped. I lost the majority of my clients. And by lost I mean I said, Okay, we have to slow down. Or when we were coming up to renewal time, I didn’t renew people, like I just scaled way down because I did not want to be the reason my clients didn’t get the support that they needed.

And then I took a pay cut because I’d done that. Fair enough. I cried a lot about everything. There was [00:09:00] a lot of things that I went through and it was a big deal. And then I created a plan so that this would never happen again. I did not want this to tank my reputation, to tank my clients businesses, I did not want this to be an ongoing reality.

And so, I looked at everything. I did a massive overhaul of the way I ran my business. I changed the way I do pricing. I changed the type of people that I now choose to work with. I put personal boundaries in place. So now, even if I’m very driven to just work a little bit later, to just do a little bit more, I have to choose not [00:10:00] to, because then I end up being really tired.

And even though I’m happy to do it at the time, it compounds and then you end up exhausted and then you can’t think as clearly as you would have. So I had to learn some more things about myself and then put boundaries in place to help prevent that snowballing. I got realistic about the time I had available.

What does it actually look like? How much work time do I really have? And how much money do I need to make in that time? Because if my business couldn’t support that, it wasn’t doing what it needed. And I needed to be able to have a business that would pay me what I needed, operating at a high level and a great service.

Then [00:11:00] I changed the way that I work with my team and the things that I hand over and the discussions that I have. I changed the way I communicate with my clients and what I communicate with my clients. And the last thing that I did was got a coach that I very, very much trust. So every time I work with this coach, my business grows.

That’s just the reality of it. And it’s, Because of who they are and how I feel when they’re in my corner and I feel like I can do what I need to do and I feel like I’m being held accountable, but not in a scary way, but it is let’s set some things that are actually achievable that we can do or let’s try this and see what happens.

And, hey people pleaser, it’s okay if it doesn’t work, because it’s all play. [00:12:00] And this point in my life, where it all turned to poo, I really do believe it will be the lowest point that my business has experienced. Like, there was a tornado. It was a living nightmare. And there were a lot of things I needed to change to right the ship.

And I’m so glad that I did them. I’m so glad that I didn’t just give up. I’m so thankful that I have clients that are open and honest with me, and that I was a brave enough person to actually hear what they were saying at that point, even though it was the last thing I wanted to hear. And I’m sharing this with you, because I want you to know that if you’re finding it hard in life, or if you’re building an OBM business and you’re finding that hard, [00:13:00] it’s okay.

And even if the worst things happen, you can always turn it around. I know I did. And I really believe that we need to talk about these things more because I’m fairly certain that some of the things that I changed, some of the things I experienced, just sharing them will help you in your journey. And when somebody else shares theirs with me, it will help me in my journey.

So I wanted to have and take the opportunity to allow you to get to know me a little bit better. A real, true, honest version of me. And that’s all for today’s episode. I hope that it gives you… excitement and confidence or makes you feel nice on the inside because I know that some of those things aren’t very fun to talk about [00:14:00] but I really do hope it’s equipped you with a new way to think about things.

Have a great day everybody. I shall see you next week.



Creating Amazing Client Offboarding Experiences: Goodbye is never goodbye

Creating Amazing Client Offboarding Experiences: Goodbye is never goodbye

Unlocking the Secrets to Creating Amazing Client Offboarding Experiences


How do you leave a lasting positive impression even after the project ends? In the OBM world, it is not just about securing contracts, it’s about maintaining positive relationships even after the business transaction has ended.

Let’s delve deep into the crucial aspect of the client experience – offboarding. Even in cases where the contract ended on rocky terms, or it didn’t progress as far as expected, leaving a positive note is pivotal as you never know what lies beyond.

This episode shares:

  • Figuring out and sharing your offboarding game plan
  • Handling the nitty-gritty – account access, handover calls, and the data cleanup
  • Asking for testimonials and referrals during offboarding
  • Keeping the client relationship alive and kicking after offboarding

Building a High-Level Offboarding Process

“Goodbye is never goodbye.

So we are talking about the breakup and we want it to be good right till the very end.”

The concept of an amazing client journey doesn’t stop at onboarding and delivery—it extends all the way to the final stages. Offboarding, the last step of the client experience, is a critical phase that many businesses overlook, which can result in missed opportunities and a tarnished reputation. It’s time to flip the script and see how a thoughtfully executed offboarding process can foster lasting relationships and even future business.

The foundation of a successful offboarding experience lies in having a clear, organised process. Understanding the practical steps to follow can help you create a structured journey for your client. Consider what needs to happen and when, including removing access to client accounts, scheduling offboarding or handover calls, and deleting any of your client’s assets from your system.

Tip: 💡Set up reminders or automated emails to ensure you communicate these processes at the right times.


Effective Communication the Key to a Smooth Offboarding

Once your process is mapped out, it’s crucial to start communicating with your client about the offboarding journey. The timeline of this communication depends on your specific context. If the end of a contract is approaching, you might want to start discussing the next steps.

The goal here is to create a structured communication plan around your offboarding process. Be specific about what needs to happen, when it needs to happen, and what part the client plays in it. This prevents any potential misunderstandings and ensures that both parties are on the same page.

Action: 💡 Create a clear and comprehensive offboarding email template. This should detail each step of the process and what’s required from the client. Remember to tailor this communication to the specific client and project for best results.

Pay Attention to the Client’s Needs

An excellent offboarding process not only caters to your needs but also pays special attention to the client’s. Ask your clients what they require from you before the partnership concludes. This step ensures no loose ends are left untied and enhances the client’s overall experience.

Tip: 💡Include a final check-in in your offboarding process where you explicitly ask the client if there’s anything else they need. This could be related to passwords, account access, or other project details.

Safe Handling of Data and Access

Dealing with access to accounts and data management can be a sensitive area during offboarding. It’s crucial to establish a clear process for removing access and deleting data. Ensure you communicate these steps to your client so they can be prepared for any necessary actions on their part.

Let your clients know your data storage protocols. For example, inform them about how long you keep their assets and when you’ll delete them from your servers. This step not only maintains transparency but also protects both parties in the case of data loss.

Action: 🎯Create a data management checklist that includes all the assets and accounts that you need to manage during the offboarding process.

Testimonials and Referrals

Offboarding provides an excellent opportunity to gather testimonials and ask for referrals. Build it into your process so it feels natural and less awkward. It’s a simple way to show appreciation for the collaboration and solicit feedback that could benefit your business in the future.

Before asking for a testimonial, ensure you have your client’s consent on how you plan to use their testimonial – whether you want to use their name, photo, or if it would be anonymous. Similarly, asking for referrals can open doors to potential clients who may be in need of your services.

Tip: 💡Make the testimonial process easier for your clients by providing a simple format or guiding questions to help them share their feedback.

Continued Contact and Relationship Management

Offboarding is not the end of the relationship with your client. Make a point to keep in touch, ask them how they’re doing, and maintain a professional yet cordial relationship. Remember, we are all human beings and a little touch of humanity goes a long way in business relationships.

“Make a note to circle back to say, how are you going?  Be social. Jump online, connect with them. It can still be very professional and from a professional manner, but we’re human beings. And just because we’re not going to work with each other anymore, or just because you don’t need my services right now, or can’t afford them, or whatever the reason is, It doesn’t mean you can’t keep that connection, these relationships are still very important.”

Whether it’s sending a quick email, connecting on social media, or sending a holiday greeting, keeping the relationship alive can have far-reaching benefits. Your client will appreciate your care and attention, and when they need something in the future, they will think of you.

Action: 🎯 Add a ‘keep-in-touch’ reminder in your calendar to check in with former clients periodically.


Wrapping it up

A goodbye isn’t really a final wave. It’s just a friendly, ‘see you around’.

We bet by now you get it – a well-thought-out offboarding process is a game changer. It’s not just about finishing up a project, it’s your ticket to long-lasting, awesome client relationships, more business, and a sparkling reputation. With a bit of crystal clear chit-chat, handling data securely, smartly asking for those testimonials, and keeping the relationship alive, your offboarding can be as unforgettable as your onboarding.

So, let’s turn each goodbye into a ‘catch you later,’ and remember, your journey with a client doesn’t have to stop just because the project has. Use offboarding as a chance to nurture future growth and mutual wins.


Need help creating amazing client offboarding experiences?

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Follow along with the transcript

E13 Creating Amazing Client Offboarding Experiences  Goodbye is never goodbye

 [00:00:00] hello. Hello. Welcome to another episode of The Audacious OBM. I’m Leanne Woff. Today, I’m really [00:01:00] excited. We are talking about the final piece for our Creating Amazing Client Experiences series. There’s a lot of S’s there, guys. Okay, so today’s episode is called Creating Amazing Client Offboarding Experiences.

Goodbye is never goodbye. So we are talking about the breakup and we want it to be good right till the very end. So even if you’ve ended on rocky terms, or you thought that the contract was going to go further and it didn’t, or the retainer was going to go on for a longer time, or they were going to renew and they didn’t, we still want it to be a really pleasant ending because you never know what’s going on behind the scenes.

Right. [00:02:00] All right. So I’m going to cover some things that you might not have thought about when looking at your entire offboarding journey. And it’s thinking from, again, the client’s perspective and what they might be thinking and feeling, or information they might need to know, and some things that you can do to pre empt any icky situations.

And I’ll explain a little bit more about that as I go. So the first thing we need to do, which is the same as when we’re looking at offboarding, when we’re looking at delivery, sorry, when we’re looking at onboarding, and when we’re looking at delivery, it’s looking at your process for offboarding at a high level.

So what are the things we need to do process wise? Here are the practical things. Well, I’m, I don’t need access [00:03:00] to your different accounts anymore. I need to do an offboarding call. I need to do a handover call. I need to delete any of your assets from my system. These are all the practical things. And some of them the client is involved in and some aren’t.

But we always start with the tangible pieces. So once you’ve mapped that out, I want you to look at when we need to start communicating in our offboarding journey. So if you know the end of a contract is coming up, at what point do you start talking about what happens next? Look at your system, your process, and work out where that is.

Because then you can create structured communication around it. And I want you to be really specific when you’re thinking about this. What needs to happen? When does it need to happen? When is an appropriate time to start [00:04:00] talking about it? And when we’ve kind of mapped that out, I might know, Okay, I run on quarterly retainers and we’re getting to the end of the quarter.

The client hasn’t told me if they’re going to continue for another quarter. I’ve asked them three times. So now I’m going to assume that they’re not going ahead. So at that point, I send them an email. I say, Hey, it’s been amazing working with you. I know you haven’t responded to me about whether you’ll be continuing or not.

So I’m just going to assume for now that you want to take a break for a while. Here’s what that means. So work out what your cutoff point is, because you need to be able to plan for the future, right?

Then, you work out what offboarding experience looks like for the client. At what point do I tell the client, Alright, we’re coming [00:05:00] to an end. So we need this to be After we know we’re finishing, right? Because if we’re still in the limbo mode of, are they continuing? Aren’t they? We can’t have this kind of conversation.

It just makes it awkward. But once we know for sure the contract isn’t going ahead anymore, it’s not renewing, we start our offboarding. From that minute is when we start offboarding. And I want you to be really specific when you’re communicating with your clients. I want you to be telling them what will happen, when it will happen, the order it will happen in, and what they’re going to need to do.

So again, it’s giving them as much information, relevant information up front as possible. So it might be, a month before we finish up and we start sending an email that just says, Hey! I know that the contract ends in a month, and [00:06:00] I just wanted to give you a heads up that this is how our offboarding process works.

We have a handover call. Then we we have a handover call. Then we remove our access to things. Then we get you to sign off on the project and then, and then, and then. And so when they get that, they already can see, Oh, this is what’s going to happen. When they remove their access, it’s because they’ve met this point.

They’ve already told me that’s going to happen. And what’s not going to happen then is the access gets removed. And all of a sudden your client is thinking, Oh, they’ve removed themselves from everything. Are they stopping right now? Or what’s going on? Purely because you’ve told them. It also gives you the opportunity to book in the things that you need to book in.

So if you’ve explained, we’re going to have a handover call. [00:07:00] You can book in that handover call before your contract is over. Okay, your contract ends in a month. So in about three weeks time, we need to have a handover call. Here are the dates that I have available. Do these work for you? Here’s what happens in a handover call.

So it’s setting up the rest of that process to flow really well to have it be an ongoing conversation where your client is considered and they’re actively participating in it. Then I want you to think about the things that they need to do. So map out on your process. At this point, I need the client to sign off.

This is really important. Otherwise. I might be in trouble legally, or otherwise the accounts will all still be in my name. Like, what are those things that [00:08:00] you’re definitely going to need before closing? And then make sure communicating about them is sprinkled in your offboarding process till they’re done.

We don’t want to miss anything super crucial just because we forgot to talk about it or ask for what we needed. The other thing that you can do is ask your clients what they need from you. Because they’re in this too, they’ve been working with you for how long, so closely. Hey, I know we’re ending soon, I just wanted to see if there was anything else you need from me.

I’ve removed all my access, I’ve sent you the handover, call recording. This is the opportunity I just wanted to check. Because there might be something you haven’t thought of. Oh, I gave you the password for this thing and I don’t know where it is. Or I know you set up this account for me, but I have no idea how to [00:09:00] access it.

Oh, no worries. That’s here, here and here. Not a problem. All of a sudden. That’s a much nicer experience than it is a, Alright, we’ve done handover, it was lovely working with you, goodbye. The next thing is the consideration of when things happen in terms of it’s final, removing access, deleting data, what are your data storage

protocols?, because it’s important and I know as part of my process, I tell my clients how long I keep their assets for and at what point I’ll be deleting them off my servers. So they need to make sure they keep their own copies and I remind them about that. In offboarding, because that would be awful, right?

To lose all of your stuff because you thought that your supplier had it and your supplier had already deleted it. [00:10:00] So let’s give them the opportunity to get what they need. We also need to discuss access and what can be removed at different stages because sometimes you might need access to some things and other things you can get rid of sooner, other things you might need to keep on a little bit longer, you might be moving to a different kind of service, maybe a lower retainer where you don’t need access to so much anymore.

And so just be really clear about when you’re removing access. Why you’re removing it, and if it’s that the client has to remove your access, you want to remind them to do that too.

Then let’s look at, this has been a great working experience. We have put in a lot of time and effort into building a relationship with this client. And as is pretty standard, we want to ask for a testimonial and it can [00:11:00] be a little bit awkward to ask for testimonials, but if you build it into your process, it won’t be and it can be really casual.

“Hey, I really loved working with you and I hope that you’ve enjoyed the experience too. Would you be willing to give me a testimonial?” And you can give them links and instructions to make it really easy. You can say to them, I’ll only present the message, I won’t put your name. Or you can say, “I’m going to use your name and your photo and put it on my marketing.

Is that okay?” So you’ve got to work out where in the offboarding that that is best placed. Then you also might want to be asking for referrals. Hey, you’ve told me this is amazing. If there’s anybody else in your sphere that you think might benefit from my services or need me in their world, could you please let me know or could you send them my way?

Then, [00:12:00] I want you to make a note to get back in touch with that person. This is not a flows and runs situation. You’ve built… This relationship with this person, and it’s been awesome. You don’t have to stop talking to them. You don’t have to pretend they don’t exist. You want to keep that relationship.

So make a note to circle back to say, how are you going? To say, Hey, do you need my services anymore? And be social. Jump online, connect with them. It can still be very professional and from a professional manner, but we’re human beings. And just because we’re not going to work with each other anymore, or just because you don’t need my services right now, or can’t afford them, or whatever the reason is, It doesn’t mean you can’t keep that connection, these relationships are still very important.

And so, I think it’s important for us to factor it into our process, because [00:13:00] we are very process driven. The more that we do that, the more our clients feel like we’ve invested, we’ve actually committed, we actually care about them, about their business, and it filters all the way through. So even though we’re not working with them anymore, they’re still going to remember the way they felt working with you, and the fact that you still care, and when they need something else, they’re coming back to you.

Or when their friends need something, their business friends or colleagues or, you know, suppliers, when they need something, they’re going to think of you because you’ve really built in that human element right up to the very, very end, which really isn’t the end. Goodbye is never goodbye.

Always assume it’s goodbye for now [00:14:00] in this capacity. So we’ve come to the end of our creating amazing client experiences. This is something that I walk all the students in OBM Academy through. It’s one of my nine crucial steps in my six figure OBM roadmap because I believe it is so important. And I hope across the last four episodes.

I’ve given you a really solid foundation of how you can create these experiences and the benefit of doing it. I would really love it if you could let me know if you’ve tried any of these things. I always like to see the different techniques OBMs are trying or things they’re adding in to their processes to expand that experience.

It’s really exciting. It’s fun. So yeah, get [00:15:00] in touch. You can send me a DM, send me an email, however you wish. I will speak to you next week. Thanks everybody.



Creating Amazing Client Service Delivery Experiences: Giving clients what they need, when they need it, the way they need it

Creating Amazing Client Service Delivery Experiences: Giving clients what they need, when they need it, the way they need it

The Power of First Impressions for an Unforgettable Client Experience

Think of client service like being a translator. Just like a translator who speaks many languages, giving great client service means understanding the needs of your client and your business. The goal? Make sure both sides get each other, loud and clear.

It may not always be a piece of cake, but it’s really important. And that’s why this guide is here – to help you understand the tough bits and make your journey easier.

Let’s jump right in and discover how to make clients happy, and how to make your services the best they can be. Simply put, this guide is your map to going above and beyond for your clients.

This episode shares:

  • The necessity of designing a well-defined service delivery process
  • The role of continuous and effective communication in service delivery
  • The significance of adding unexpected elements to elevate the client experience
  • The importance of personalisation in service delivery for a human touch
  • The power of regular updates in managing client emotions and expectations
  • The view of client service as an ongoing journey aiming for exceeding client expectations

Mapping Out the Delivery Process

“Look at your service, look at the service you have sold your client, and I want you to really think about the steps that you take to complete that service”

Your service delivery process is the roadmap that defines how you’ll navigate your client’s journey. It’s essential to break down your service into its basic steps, identifying all the necessary resources and pieces of information you’ll need from your clients to execute the tasks effectively.

You can do this by creating timelines or defining milestones based on your workflow. Whether your process takes a week or is outcome-based, mapping it out ensures you have a clear direction. Remember, the aim is to prevent unnecessary disruptions that may hinder your momentum. Efficiency is key here.

Action: 🎯Use a project management tool to track the process, milestones, and timeline for each task. This will provide a visual guide, making it easier to manage.


The Power of Effective Communication

Effective communication is crucial in setting the tone for your service delivery. Anticipate the type of information you’ll need from your clients and strategise on how you could receive it sooner in the journey. Consistent updates and check-ins throughout the journey also help in keeping your clients informed about the progress of their work.

Furthermore, acknowledging your client’s emotions and expectations along the journey will improve your relationship and their perception of your service. Regular communication can alleviate any anxieties and answer any arising questions.

Action: 🎯 Regularly send updates to your clients, even if there is no significant progress. This keeps them in the loop and reassures them that their project is on track.

The Significance of Frequent and Purposeful Communication

With frequent communication comes the need for purposeful interaction. As an online business manager (OBM), your connection with your clients is crucial. Therefore, each interaction should carry weight. This means having clear objectives or discussion points during each conversation and not wasting their time with unnecessary chit-chat.

When it comes to communication modes, consider different ways to reach your clients that align with their preferences and the context of the conversation. Whether it’s through a project management system, Zoom calls, emails, or even WhatsApp messages, ensure it fits the context and frequency of the communication.

Tip: 💡To determine your clients’ communication preferences, simply ask them. This will enhance your communication and ensure they are comfortable and satisfied with the process.

Surprise and Delight: The X-Factor in Client Service Delivery

One way to enhance your client service delivery is to add elements of surprise and delight. These could range from sending your clients small thoughtful gifts to providing additional services that make their journey easier and more enjoyable. These gestures show your clients that you’ve gone the extra mile to consider their needs and preferences.

Action: 🎯 Keep a list of potential ‘surprise and delight’ items or services you can provide your clients. Tailor these to your clients’ preferences to ensure they find them useful and enjoyable.

Personalisation: The Human Touch in Service Delivery

Personalization is a powerful tool in client service delivery. It involves showing empathy and understanding during your client’s journey, especially during challenging times. In these moments, a simple gesture like sending a card or flowers can make your client feel seen and appreciated.

It’s worth noting that it’s impossible to anticipate every situation that may occur. Hence, keeping a backup list of potential gestures or actions can be a handy tool in managing unexpected circumstances.

Tip: 💡Add a reminder in your calendar for your client’s upcoming birthday. Sending them a small birthday gift is a thoughtful gesture that adds a personal touch and helps foster a deeper connection with your clients. It shows that you value them as individuals and goes a long way in building a stronger relationship.

Meeting Client Expectations and Emotions: Building an Emotional Connection

So, we’ve talked about the process and communication, but there’s another crucial part of client service – understanding your clients’ feelings and expectations. It’s like being a friend who not only listens but also understands.

Try to put yourself in your clients’ shoes and imagine how they might feel at each step of the journey. It’s not always about facts and figures; sometimes, it’s about the emotional side of things. Maybe they’re feeling a bit anxious because they haven’t heard from you in a while, or they’re excited to see the results of your work.

The key is to keep them in the loop. Regular updates can work like a soothing balm for any worries they might have. It’s like telling your friend, “Hey, I’ve got this, and here’s what I’m doing.” It’s not about bombarding them with every little detail, but giving them a reassuring nudge that things are moving forward.

Even if there’s no big update, just a quick check-in can make a world of difference. It tells your client that you’re there, you’re working on their project, and you haven’t forgotten about them. It’s about making your communication frequent, meaningful, and most importantly, comforting.

Remember, we all like to feel valued and in the know, and your clients are no different. So, don’t underestimate the power of a simple update – it could be the bridge that strengthens your client’s trust in you.

Action: 🎯  Make a habit of updating your clients regularly, even if it’s just a quick “Hello, here’s what’s happening.” It keeps them reassured, involved, and most importantly, it shows that you value them.

The “Surprise and Delight” Factor: Going Beyond Expectations

Remember when you received that unexpected gift, or when someone went out of their way to help you? That’s what we call the “surprise and delight” factor. It’s about doing more than what’s expected and making your clients feel special.

In the world of client service, this could be something as simple as a personalised note or as grand as a gift box. It’s not about the size or cost of the gesture, but the thought and care behind it. These little surprises can add a spark to your clients’ experience and show them how much you appreciate them.

Imagine you’re a chef who doesn’t just cook the dish but adds an extra touch to make it stand out – maybe a special ingredient or a unique presentation. That’s what you want to aim for with your client service. You’re not just delivering a service; you’re creating an experience that they’ll remember.

Tip: 💡Start thinking about how you can add a “surprise and delight” element to your client service. It could be something specific to your client’s tastes or something universally enjoyable. The key is to make it thoughtful and personalised.

Personalising the Service Delivery Experience: Adjusting to the Rhythm

If there’s one thing you can expect in client service, it’s that no two clients are the same. Each one has their unique rhythm, preferences, and circumstances. 

Maybe they have different communication styles or different ways of doing things. Or perhaps they’re going through a tough time and need a bit more flexibility. Being able to adapt to these differences and show understanding and empathy can go a long way in building a strong relationship with your clients.

Just think about it: how do you feel when someone adjusts their pace to walk with you, or when they adapt their plans to accommodate your needs? It feels good, right? That’s exactly how your clients feel when you personalise your service to fit their circumstances. Stay open and flexible in your service delivery

Tip: 💡Be ready to adjust your plans and processes to match your clients’ unique rhythms. It might take a bit of effort, but the trust and loyalty you’ll earn from your clients will be worth it.

Wrapping it up

“Delivering client service is not a one-time event but an ongoing journey.”

In conclusion, creating an amazing client service delivery experience requires a strategic blend of process mapping, effective and frequent communication, and the incorporation of surprise and delight elements. Lastly, personalising your service delivery underscores your empathy and dedication to your clients’ needs. 

Crafting an exceptional client service delivery isn’t just about ticking boxes or crossing tasks off a list. Instead, it’s a unique blend of understanding your clients’ needs, connecting with their emotions, and going beyond their expectations. It’s about painting a picture of care, dedication, and respect for your client, showing them they are valued and understood.

So, as you go back to your business, remember these insights. Use them as your compass to guide your actions and decisions. Start today and transform your service delivery from good to extraordinary. Remember, every interaction with your clients is an opportunity to create an experience that resonates with them, makes them feel appreciated, and keeps them coming back.


Need help creating amazing client onboarding experiences?

We’ve got just the resource for you.

Embark on your path to becoming a six-figure Online Business Manager with our comprehensive FREE roadmap. Gain insights into key strategies, and build the confidence needed to align your service with the value you bring. Don’t wait.

Hungry for more? Yearning to fast-track your journey to a successful, 6-figure OBM career? Our OBM Academy is here for you. Gain access to exclusive support, invaluable resources, and the tools you need to sharpen your skills and elevate your OBM career. Don’t miss this opportunity.
Follow along with the transcript

E12 Creating Amazing Client Service Delivery Experiences: Giving clients what they need, when they need it, the way they need it

Leanne Woff: [00:00:00] hello. Hello. Welcome to another episode of The Audacious OBM. I’m Leanne Woff and [00:01:00] today we are talking creating amazing client service delivery experiences, giving clients what they need, when they need it, the way they need it. So I wanted to tackle this as part of our Creating Amazing Experiences series.

And so we’ve covered why we need to do it. We’ve covered the onboarding experience to create, now we’re looking at service delivery. So this is the part where you actually do the work, where you deliver, right? So the first thing that we are going to do is map out our delivery process. Now, what I mean by this is look at your service, look at the service you have sold your client, and I want you to really think about the steps that you take [00:02:00] to complete that service and what you need to be able to do it well.

So the information that you need, and it might be assets that you need from clients, but just do a map of that because these are our known factors, right? So we always start there. Let’s map them out. Now you can do this using timelines or using milestones. So depending on how you work, if you know that. You know, it usually takes you a week to do a certain thing or two weeks to do a certain thing.

You could map out your delivery based on that time, or you can do it based on outcome. Okay? Once I’ve taken the brief, that’s this milestone, then I do the first draft, then I, and create your milestones. So either way is fine. We just wanna get some of our [00:03:00] known quantities down right. Now, once we know the things that have to happen and we know the things that we need to make them happen, I want you to think about communication.

I want you to think about. What ways could we possibly get all of those assets or get that information sooner in the journey? So I know that I spoke to you in our last episode about my onboarding process and how I ended up creating this massive client onboarding form, but I didn’t explain what really led me to do that.

And it was when I was looking at my service delivery and I was looking at. Where are the delay points or where are the bits where we’re asking for more things or I can’t make a decision and then I have to go back to the client, and it was [00:04:00] these places where I didn’t have enough information and I thought if I could just have all of that information upfront, then when I get into delivery, I have my foundation knowledge, but I also have the exact pieces that I need from the client already, and then I can just keep going.

Because here’s the thing, right? If you are working on something and you are getting some traction and it feels good, everything is making sense, you wanna keep doing that, you don’t want to stop that boulder from rolling. You wanna keep going and get it done. And if we stop and start all the time, we’re actually less efficient because we have to get back into understanding what it is we’re working on, where we stopped, what we left off, and we switched to something else.

So we are context switching too much. So it was that that caused me to make that big form. I actually looked at each step [00:05:00] of my, each step of my process so that I could then get what I needed. And the whole project would run smoother and it worked. The other things. So not only asking for pieces of information, but the other type of communication I want you to think about is how your client is feeling as you progress through this journey.

What are they thinking about? What are they feeling? What are their questions? And what is their perception? Of what you are doing. Because I know if I work with a supplier and they say to me, yep, cool, it’s gonna take one month to do it. And then I sign off and they do the engagement, and then I don’t hear from them for three of those weeks.

I start to get a little bit nervous. Are they still doing it? Have they forgotten about me? Don’t they need my [00:06:00] logo? And I create all of these questions in my head, that might not be true at all, purely because I’ve not heard anything. And then I feel the need as a customer to email and go, just checking you haven’t forgotten. And then hope they don’t get offended. And I really think that this is something that we need to tackle better in our OBM businesses, is thinking about what is the client’s perception here? Because I know I said to them, I’m going to deliver this thing in two weeks, and no, it hasn’t been two weeks yet, but maybe I need to give them an update before that two weeks is up, even if it is a, Hey, I’m just checking in.

I wanted to let you know that I’ve done phase one of this job. It’s looking good, and I’ll be back in touch if I need something more. None of this has to be super impressive or, like lots of detail. It is more [00:07:00] about easing some of those concerns and answering some of those questions your clients might have.

So I want you to think about the important messages along that journey, along that delivery process you just mapped out. And you might have a few different ones of these depending on what services you offer, right? And it’s not always going to be the same thing. If your service changes, the process changes.

And some of this will translate across, but not always. So you might need a few. So let’s map those important messages, answer the important questions. Think about our clients. Another thing I want you to do is start to really think about the frequency of your communication. So we work quite closely with clients.

We’re online business managers. And it might be okay if you were an accountant and you spoke to your clients once a fortnight or once a month [00:08:00] and you had, a regular meeting scheduled in and every quarter you did their tax. And that might work well and that might be all your clients need. But for OBMS, that’s not the case.

We are in, in, in businesses and we need our connection with our clients to thrive, for their businesses to thrive. So our communication has to be much more frequent. And the more frequent means it needs to be more purposeful. And what I mean by that is we don’t wanna just send messages to say, hi, how are you?

Hi, how are you? And it doesn’t actually have any substance. We wanna communicate clearly. We want to go to them with clear objectives or clear discussion points, so we are not wasting their time, especially if we need to talk to them a lot. And obviously we still want the friendly approach, but we don’t just want conversation for no purpose.[00:09:00] 

So if you are working with OBM clients, think about how you communicate, what form, what mode of communication? Do you meet with them in person? Do you WhatsApp? Do you have a Task Management System? Do you do Zoom calls? Because if you’re frequently talking to someone, the likelihood is you need different modes of communication.

You don’t wanna sit on Zoom all day every day just to get a question answered. So I really want you to think about the different ways you can talk to your clients and how frequently they want information from you and how frequently they actually wanna see the progress and how they wanna see it, because that matters.

So we’re looking at, and I know a lot of this is unknown, you might not know the answers to these. I don’t know how [00:10:00] my clients want me to talk to them. I don’t know how often. I don’t know if they want me to update them when I finished every phase or when I finished three phases. It’s always gonna change and there is no exact answer.

The best thing. That you can do is ask them. And that’s what I did. And that’s how I built out my delivery process. The next thing that I want you to factor in is the points where you’re going to need sign off or you’re going to need, permission to proceed to the next step. So if you are looking at your process and you’re like, okay, here I like, here is a clear cut draft one is finished before I do draft two, I’m going to need it signed off.

And then I want you to factor in when you could possibly start communicating that [00:11:00] with your client so that they know, hey, when we get to this stage, this time, this date, I’m gonna need you to set aside some time to review this. Here’s how much time I think. Here’s what it is. Here is the impact. If we don’t get it done on time.

Now this is a big one. Sometimes we forget to explain why we need it, and we assume the client knows. “Well, they know if they don’t do their bit, I can’t do my bit.” Yes, you’re correct. They absolutely do know that, but they don’t know the impact on the project as a whole because they’re not in it. They’re not looking at the whole timeline because that’s your job.

So we need to explain to them, Hey, if I can’t do this bit on time, it means this piece is gonna be delayed. We’re not gonna get to the printer in time, and then we won’t be able to have this asset at all. [00:12:00] So try and be as clear as you can just to create that full understanding. The less guessing our clients have to do the better.

Okay, next thing, factor in, surprise and delight. Now this bit is my favorite. So we looked at our process, we’ve mapped out when we’re talking to clients, what we’re talking to them about, the different things that we might need from them, the different points that they need to be aware of, that we need them to keep some time aside for us, how we’re communicating with them.

Do we have an email nurture? Do we have a process where we send a text message? Is it client calls? What does this look like? Now we get to our ‘surprise and delight’, and that’s where I look at the process and I go; right, now what other [00:13:00] ways and what other things can I implement to make them feel good or to make this journey easier?

And that’s when I start sending gift boxes or pencils or I remember I used to send my clients sprout pencils, so it’s like a gray lead pencil, and once you’re finished using it, you put it in a pot with soil and it turns into a herb. It grows. Just different things depending on what your clients like and need.

It might be that you work with a lot of a D H D clients. And so instead of sending them sprout pencils, you might send them, an A D H D organizer planner. There’s so many different things you can do that will make your client’s journey easier and just give that little bit of a perk for them.

The, hey, they’ve really thought about this and they thought about me and this [00:14:00] is amazing. And just keep, as long as we’re delivering everything we need to deliver. We’re communicating and then we’ve got this extra thing, like the experience is amazing. Like we’re trying to not just do the mediocre experience that anyone could do.

We’re trying to be amazing, and I think that this is a really easy way to do it. The other thing I want you to think about is points of personalization. Now, what I mean here is life is not linear. And it’s not like that for our clients either. And so it doesn’t matter how much we plan, sometimes our plans aren’t going to come off the way we want them to, and we can’t account for every situation that will ever occur.

So for instance, in OBM Academy, one of my students, her dad passed away. [00:15:00] And I could have just continued on my way delivering the content and going above and beyond and trying to make sure everybody understood what we were doing and make sure they were progressing and they were getting the results they needed.

But right then, this student didn’t need that. What she needed was someone to see her and appreciate her and recognize what she was going through. And so instead, I sent her flowers and she was completely surprised and amazed because I thought about it and because there is no way I could have assumed that was gonna happen and I did what I thought I could do that might make it just the teeniest, tiniest bit easier, or for her to feel less alone.

And so that’s what I’m saying, have. What you could have is like a backup list, okay? If we know that someone’s sick or having a hard time, here’s a list [00:16:00] of different things or different suppliers where we can source something and send it to them. Or it could be a card. It could be a special pack you have in your office.

It could be, okay, if I have a client and they’re going to have a birthday, this is what we’re gonna do. If I have a client and they’re getting married, this is the kind of thing I wanna do. So look for, some of those points where it might not be clear cut, but you know, you want the human element of you to come out there.

All right. And then the final thing, this is a really big one, are you listening? It is. Listen closely. Listen closely. A lot of the time, our clients are telling us what they need, but we’re not hearing it. And filling that need will [00:17:00] make the experience amazing for them. So if they’re repeating something like, ‘I’m really, really visual’, and you keep sending them emails that are written, they’re going to be frustrated that entire time, not because you’ve done something wrong.

But because you missed the opportunity to present something in the way they needed it to make it feel amazing. If they’re saying to you, I’m just wondering where this is up to. I’m just wondering where this is up to. Do you need anything from me? That’s telling you, you’re not communicating enough. So I want you just to listen to the things that aren’t being said or the things that are being said.

But we’re not paying enough attention to them because we’re so involved in meeting our deliverables and just getting it done. So if we can look for things like that and be aware and pay more attention and then put in place some things to [00:18:00] improve those, your experience will be amazing. So, I hope that that has helped and it has given you an understanding of how you can craft an intentional, amazing client service delivery experience with you.

So not only do you deliver exceptional work, but they feel incredible the whole time. Thanks for listening. I’ll chat to you next week.




Creating Amazing Client Onboarding Experience: How to get clients to love you from the get-go

Creating Amazing Client Onboarding Experience: How to get clients to love you from the get-go

The Power of First Impressions for an Unforgettable Client Experience

Imagine stepping into a fine dining restaurant for the first time. You’re immediately greeted by a friendly host, your coat is taken with a smile, and you’re guided to a perfectly set table. You glance at the menu and find your dietary preferences already considered. Your evening has barely started, but you’re already looking forward to your next visit. Just like that, the restaurant won you over with an exceptional first impression.

The OBM world isn’t all that different. Like the restaurant, your first interaction with a client — the onboarding process — sets the tone for your entire relationship. The way you welcome, guide, and engage clients during this initial stage can significantly impact their perception of you and your services. Therefore, it’s essential to perfect this process and transform these first impressions into lasting, positive relationships.

This episode shares:

  • Onboarding as Relationship Builder: Turning onboarding into a tool for nurturing client relationships
  • Value of Information: Enhancing client engagement by keeping them informed
  • Simplicity and Structure: Streamlining onboarding into digestible, orderly steps.
  • Six-Step Onboarding Process: Unpacking a practical onboarding framework
  • Communication: Prioritising transparency and regularity to boost client trust

The Power of Onboarding – It’s more than just a Process

“I believe that client onboarding is the process that can make or break an entire relationship with a client.”

Onboarding isn’t just a series of steps your clients need to follow. It’s an opportunity to show your clients that you value them, that you’ve heard their needs and concerns, and that you’re committed to supporting them. It’s an opportunity to make them feel seen, heard, and secure. And it’s an opportunity to set the tone for a positive, supportive, and respectful relationship.

Onboarding is a chance to show clients not only that you’re capable and efficient but also that you’re caring and attentive. It’s an opportunity to make clients feel that they’re not just another account number, but valued partners in a business relationship.

Taking the time to reflect on what made past onboarding experiences successful can be highly instructive. Was it the extra effort you put in at the beginning to make everything clear and easy to understand? Was it the personalised attention to detail that showed clients you were listening to them and valued their input? Or was it the sense of security you provided, giving clients confidence that they were in good hands?

Action: 🎯Take a moment to reflect on successful onboardings you’ve managed in the past. Identify the key components that made these experiences stand out. Then, integrate these successful elements into your future onboardings to replicate that positive experience for all clients.

The Cost Considerations of Creating Client Experiences

Creating client experiences may not generate immediate revenue, but it does offer significant long-term benefits. The investment of time and money into client experiences can seem daunting, but the payoff is worth it.

The biggest cost is actually time. We all have a finite amount of time, and we have to use it wisely. So why should we spend some of our valuable time planning out client experiences? The other cost, which is less than the time investment, is the investment of money. This one is somewhat more flexible because you can control it and there’s lots of different avenues you can go down and you get to choose whether it will be very expensive or not so expensive.

Tip: 💡 Consider the long-term benefits of investing in client experiences, such as increased brand reputation, organic referrals, and the opportunity to charge higher rates.

Crafting an Onboarding Process that Resonates

Creating a robust onboarding process is like crafting a personal welcome message that speaks directly to your clients. It’s more than just steps and procedures. It’s about making clients feel seen, heard, and secure right from the get-go. The magic recipe? Informative communication.

“We need to tell people what to expect. We want to let them know what’s coming up and how this is going to work”

Essentially, the mantra is to keep clients in the loop. They should know what’s coming, how it works, and when to expect it. By providing a clear roadmap, you’ll boost their confidence and keep any anxieties at bay.

Tip: 💡Be the guiding light in your client’s journey. Let them know the stages, their roles, and the timelines. Also, stay open to their unique needs and preferences. After all, onboarding should feel like a warm handshake, not a one-size-fits-all protocol.

The Onboarding Process – Keep It Simple and Structured

Contrary to popular belief, an effective onboarding process doesn’t have to be complex. Sometimes, simple is all you need. The primary objective is clarity and ease of understanding. A complex process can be intimidating, while a simple, well-structured process feels easy and inviting.

Review your process with these questions:

      • What can flow better? 
      • What can be communicated at a different time? 
      • What can be done differently? 
      • How can the client feel better about this process?

Your goal should not only be to address the practical aspects of the process but also to add elements that make your client feel valued.

Action: 🎯 Break down your onboarding process into simple, easy-to-follow steps. Create a checklist or a roadmap that can guide your clients through the process. It provides clarity, direction, and a sense of accomplishment as they tick off completed tasks.

6 Steps to Success – Unpacking the Onboarding Process 

Understanding the onboarding process is critical to any business endeavour. It’s more than just a formality; it’s an opportunity to instil confidence in your clients, showcase your professionalism, and cultivate long-term relationships. Here, we break down this seemingly complex process into six integral stages that are simple to implement: 

STEP 1: Map out the process at a high level

The first step is to create a holistic view of your onboarding process. This high-level blueprint helps in visualising the journey from the initial client interaction to establishing a solid business relationship. This could include timelines, client engagement strategies, communication methods, and more.

STEP 2: Group the process into stages

Once you have an overarching view, it’s time to segment the process into manageable stages. These stages should be clearly defined, logical, and progressive to ensure a seamless transition for the client. Stages could involve steps like initial discovery calls, contractual discussions, or client orientation.

STEP 3: Transform these stages into a marketing tool

Now that you’ve laid out your process, leverage it as a marketing tool. Sharing an overview of your onboarding process in your marketing materials can attract potential clients and assure them of your thoroughness and professionalism. This transparency helps build trust even before a client has decided to work with you.

STEP 4: Incorporate your process on your sales page

Incorporate your onboarding process on your sales page to give potential clients a clear idea of what to expect when they decide to engage with your services. This step not only solidifies the impression of professionalism but also reduces the chance of misunderstanding or miscommunication down the line.

STEP 5: Create minimal onboarding documents

While details are important, it’s equally essential to avoid overwhelming clients with unnecessary information. Aim for minimal, concise, and relevant onboarding documents. These documents should convey the essential information clearly and quickly, enabling a smooth and efficient onboarding process.

STEP 6: Identify  missed opportunities

Finally, make it a point to regularly review and refine your onboarding process. Look for areas of improvement or opportunities that might have been overlooked. This step ensures your process remains dynamic, evolving with the changing needs of your clients and your business.

Remember, the key to a successful onboarding process lies in transparency, simplicity, and adaptability. Assure your clients of your professionalism, and pave the way for productive, long-lasting relationships.

Action: 🎯Take the time to map out your onboarding journey, transforming it into an artful experience that leaves a lasting impression on your clients. 

The Art of Communication 

The final, crucial step is reviewing your communication strategy.  Communication is the backbone and can either make or break the onboarding experience. Proactive and transparent communication reassures the client, keeping them in the loop about what’s coming.  

Miscommunication often arises from insufficient planning, but a small amount of effort can significantly clarify and streamline the process. Look at the communication map we’ve created, examining what, when, and how we’re communicating. Could we intersperse emails with a phone call, a text message, or share information via a professionally designed brochure? 

Enhancing the quality of communication also involves providing a clear roadmap of the future steps. 

“You are never going to go wrong by giving your client a heads up about what’s coming” 

Always give your client a heads up about what’s coming next in the onboarding process.  Regular reminders and updates not only prevent clients from sifting through numerous emails but also preempts their questions, saving time and energy.  This act of transparency can further build trust and open communication lines

Once you’ve planned it well, implementing this process will make for a smoother journey for the client, and they will appreciate your thoroughness. 

Action: Create a communication timeline that outlines when and how you will communicate with your client.

Wrapping It Up

Effective onboarding isn’t about introducing revolutionary changes but rather about refining existing processes. It’s about understanding the client’s needs, communicating effectively, and making the process simple, efficient, and valuable. By focusing on these aspects, you can transform your onboarding experience, laying the groundwork for enduring and fruitful client relationships.

Need help creating amazing client onboarding experiences?

We’ve got just the resource for you.

Embark on your path to becoming a six-figure Online Business Manager with our comprehensive FREE roadmap. Gain insights into key strategies, and build the confidence needed to align your service with the value you bring. Don’t wait.

Hungry for more? Yearning to fast-track your journey to a successful, 6-figure OBM career? Our OBM Academy is here for you. Gain access to exclusive support, invaluable resources, and the tools you need to sharpen your skills and elevate your OBM career. Don’t miss this opportunity.
Follow along with the transcript

Creating Amazing Client Onboarding Experiences – How to get clients to love you from the get-go

[00:00:00] Hello. Hello. Welcome to another episode of the Audacious OBM. I’m Leanne Woff, and today we are [00:01:00] continuing our series on client experiences. Today’s focus is creating amazing client onboarding experiences, how to get clients to love you from the get-go. Is it possible? Yes, it is. How do I know? Because I’ve seen it before.

So I wanna start this episode by sharing a story and I believe that client onboarding, Is the process that can make or break an entire relationship with a client. And this story highlights why. So I remember I had a new client, this is a few years ago, and they were wonderful, lovely, lovely new client, really awesome human.

And I was in the onboarding phase with this [00:02:00] client and I was just following my process. The way I’ve done every other time and focusing on what we needed to do, when we needed to do it, how we needed to do it and chatting to this client. So we moved through the onboarding process through all of my predefined deliverables in my process, and my client says to me, ah, I’ve referred you to one of my business friends.

I don’t know if it’ll be a great fit, but she needs someone. And I thought of you and I gave her your details. I hope that’s okay. And I was surprised and was just like, yes. This is incredible. Thank you so much. And then I ended up speaking to the contact and I actually [00:03:00] onboarded that client’s friend as well.

Now, the reason this has significance here is because I hadn’t actually done any work yet. We were just doing the onboarding process and my client was already referring me, and that had never happened to me before. So after that happened, I had to do a little audit myself to go, what? What did I do that was so good in this situation and how do I do that more?

And it was the onboarding experience because the tone of the relationship for the rest of the time was always positive and appreciative, and I really think it’s because of how much effort I put in front. And the time and the energy that I put into crafting what this onboarding experience would be and the things it should include and the things it shouldn’t, and the [00:04:00] time that I had taken to refine it as I went.

So that’s the purpose of today’s episode, is to give you some of the tools to create an onboarding process that rocks. So let’s look at what the purpose of a great onboarding experience is. I believe your onboarding process should do three things. One, make your clients feel seen. Two, make your clients feel heard, and three, make your clients feel secure.

We’re human beings, right? So we all want. To feel safe, heard, secure, seen, noticed, appreciated, validated. They’re just our nature and [00:05:00] we’re all built with those things inside. And I think if we can give people the security and stability that they need from the very beginning, that will flow through to everything else.

So it’s really important. That we pay attention in our onboarding process. Here is the time to get to know the people you are working with, to identify what really matters here, and to give them what they need to set the tone for the rest of the relationship. So how do we do that? How do we make clients feel, seen, heard, and secure?

It’s a nice thing to say, but in reality, what does that look like? Well, we do this by being informative, so we need to put our authority cap on and we need to be the guide. We need to tell people what to [00:06:00] expect. We wanna let them know what’s coming up and how this is going to work. We want to tell our clients how things are going to progress and when.

Explaining what we’re going to need from them and when, and keeping the process as clear and concise as we can. We do not want to overwhelm people from the very beginning, especially because we’re online business managers, so we can do process and we can manage lots of information. But generally our clients are coming to us, so they don’t have to do all of that.

They want someone who’s gonna do it with them and make it a little bit easier, and you are thinking at that level so they don’t have to. So it’s really important that that shines through here. Okay, so if we know that that’s what we have to do, what [00:07:00] steps do we take to get there? When I went through my audit of how I got this extra client, this referral from onboarding.

I mapped out what I did to create that process, and there were six things. If I sum it all up, there are about six things. And it’s a really great way to get started if you don’t have something in place or you are looking to improve your onboarding experience right now. So the first one is to map out your onboarding process at a high level so we can get overwhelmed if we try and think too deeply, or we try and plan too many things at once.

So the first step is to put down the rocks. What are the [00:08:00] things that have to happen that may not be glamorous, but you know, they need to happen? So it might be, I need to get details for a work agreement. It might be I need to create the work agreement. I need to get the client to sign the work agreement.

I need to work out invoicing. I need to have a kickoff call. List out all of those things, and at this point it’s gonna be a little bit messy, and that’s fine because this is just our planning phase.

Once we’ve had a look at it, when it’s all mapped out in front of us, you should be able to see where you can reign it in a little bit, and you’ll also be able to identify which pieces are for you and which are for your clients. This is going to help you then inform your client what’s going to be needed from there.

So we are looking high level. Once you’ve done that, [00:09:00] group that process into a few stages. So it might be okay. First we do all of the administration piece, then we do a deep dive call, and then we start taking action. Once you’ve done that, because it’s a lot clearer now, right? There’s only three things your client needs to see that’s happening and that’s easy to consume, and it’s, they’re easy to understand what those things are because they’re general things.

Don’t forget that onboarding isn’t a really strange unfamiliar process no-one follows. We do onboarding in our lives on a regular basis. It’s just called all different things. So we wanna give them things that they can relate to and connect to. Once we’ve done that, we wanna turn those stages, those groups in your process into a marketing tool.

[00:10:00] So a really great way when you are onboarding is to do the pre-onboarding in your marketing. And so if you start talking about, Hey guys, I’m an OBM. I work with rockstar Empire Builders, and when I get a new lead in, this is what it looks like. We go through three main phases. The first one is to sort out all the admin, get our contracts in place so everybody is covered legally, and we don’t have to think about that anymore.

Then we create a plan through a deep dive call, and we get to know all the ins and outs. Of our clients’ business, we get to know each other a little bit better, and we set some goals so that we can always be headed in a strategic, purposeful direction. And then this is the best bit. This is when the magic happens.

We start getting things done. [00:11:00] See how now it’s a marketing pitch, but if someone hears that and then they come to work with you, They already know a little bit about what to expect, and they’re excited. It doesn’t feel scary. It doesn’t feel intimidating. You’ve already told them, and that’s before they’ve even contacted you.

So we wanna build it in and use it as a marketing tool. The third thing is to put your onboarding process on your sales page. So you can do it in three chunks like that you can break it down into a little bit more detail. You can turn it into a story, but the idea here is to show a visual kind of map something people can see and it’s another way that they can feel secure.

It’s another way to cement. This is what’s gonna happen. This is what I can [00:12:00] expect. It’s not scary. It’s easy. Three quick steps and we’re in. That feels great. And it’s a simple way to do it. It just takes a little bit of thought in how you wanna articulate or how you wanna phrase that process, and don’t overthink it.

Sometimes. Simple is all you need. The biggest objective here is to make sure it’s clear and understandable, because we wanna make it feel easy – and complex never feels easy. So once you’ve done your process map or your three stages or your story, put it on your sales page, ‘cos again, you’re using it to help nurture those leads in your marketing.

The fourth thing I did is I created minimal onboarding documents. I found [00:13:00] that. When I first was an OBM, I had all these different forms or all these different things that needed to be done. I had a work agreement. I had a client onboarding form, and I had an email that went out to get different information from the client.

I had a list of tools I was going to need access to, and I just found that it was a lot, each of the pieces were necessary. But to be getting four different emails or five different emails with all these different things that you have to do, it is overwhelming and it is confusing, and I didn’t like it. I never had a client complain about it, but I didn’t like it.

It felt messy for me, and that is not the kind of experience I wanted to deliver. So I looked at each of these pieces and I looked at the purpose of them. And then I looked at my process map of when things happen and why, to see what could be consolidated, [00:14:00] what could happen maybe a bit later or in a different way.

And I recreated it. And I tell you now, I ended up with a client onboarding, like deep dive form, and it takes my clients at least an hour to complete it. And I tell them that upfront and because I’ve told them, they go, they expect it to take that long. The feedback I get from that form is amazing. Every time it is,

Oh, that form made me really think. I had to really think. And then I thought well, why aren’t I doing this? And maybe I do need to do this. Because my time and energy has gone into that form and I ask specific things to get my clients thinking so they can get results at the same time is giving me all that information that I needed.

And so that’s [00:15:00] become a really successful thing, even though it seems like, oh, but I could have had five little things or one big thing. Mm. It’s a lot of time to invest in filling in a form. I have all these stories in my head of why it could be a bad idea, but it has worked really well, and it means that then there’s less admin for me, less admin for them, and it flows really well.

All right. Number five, once you’ve done all of those things, So we’re using our process in our marketing. We’re sharing our process as a visual on our sales page. We’ve streamlined our collection of information and we’re looking at our high level map of what our onboarding process [00:16:00] is. Now, we wanna consider.

What opportunities we might have missed. So if we’re looking at this process and we see, hmm, we do these three things and then there is a gap for 60 days. Yes, I’m being highly exaggerative. There’s a gap for 60 days that probably doesn’t feel very good. What can we do? To pull that 60 days forward. Can we take something out from later and bring it forward a little bit?

What makes sense for this to flow a little bit better? What things can I be saying at a different time? What could we be doing in a different way? How can we make our client feel really great? And part of it is the [00:17:00] “surprise and delight piece” is we want to factor in not only the process and those practical things that need to happen, but things that we put in purely to help our client and to make them feel valued and valuable.

And so for me, When I’m doing this and I’m looking at my own processes, I think about where along the onboarding journey we are, what our, what my clients might be thinking, feeling, and based on the service, what it is that might help them in their journey. 

 And then once we’ve highlighted all our gaps, considered our missed opportunities, created a plan to maybe fill some of those opportunities. The final thing we need to do is review our communication. Now, this is a big one. [00:18:00] Communication is something that I think goes wrong a lot of the time just because it’s not thought out well enough.

And it doesn’t take a lot to improve it and to clarify things and to make the journey smoother, which is the purpose of this. We wanna look at that map we’ve created. And look at the different kinds of communication we have, what we’re communicating, when we’re communicating it, and how we could do that better.

So maybe instead of if we’ve got five emails in a row, maybe we need to have a phone call somewhere in there, or maybe we can send a text message or maybe we can put that information into a beautiful brochure. How can we upgrade the experience and the communication and are we communicating clearly what’s going to happen next for [00:19:00] every step?

You are never going to go wrong by giving your client a heads up about what’s coming. So great. Thanks so much for sending me this. I’ll be in touch in three days so that we can book in our call where we’re going to go through all of our goals and objectives, and then we’re going to get started. So it is just about reminding them and keeping them up to date so that they don’t have to try and remember everything, or they don’t have to dig through their email to work out what’s going on and what happens next when if you can preplan it, it’ll be quite easy for you.

And then you implement that as a process and they will love it. Let me know if this has helped you with your onboarding process, and I would be really, really interested to hear how you go [00:20:00] when you are reviewing it all. Have you found some gaps? Has it given you a different perspective? You can find me on Instagram at Leanne Woff, on Facebook, on LinkedIn.

But yeah, connect. Say hi. Let me know how you’re going. I would love, love to know. Next week we’ll be back and we will be talking about creating an amazing client service delivery experience. Speak to you then. Bye.