Archive for April 10th, 2013

Dear Danielle: How Do I Approach Clients About Subcontracting Their Work Out to Someone Else?

Dear Danielle: How Do I Approach Clients About Subcontracting Their Work Out to Someone Else?

Dear Danielle: 

My business is at the point where I’d like to outsource some of the tasks I’m doing for my clients to another Administrative Consultant so I have more time to focus on creating information products and other leveraged income projects. Any tips on how to approach my clients so they feel comfortable with the switch? I would make it seamless for them, and continue to be their contact. And any tips for selecting the right admin consultant would also be very much appreciated. Thanks!Deidra Miller, Magic Wing Administration

Why make the switch in the first place? My feeling is if you want to keep the business, never abdicate the relationship.

That one-on-one relationship and the shared body of intimate knowledge and understanding of the client and his/her business that grows from that is, after all, one the the most important ingredients that create value and allow you to achieve the results you do for clients—and why you get paid the big bucks.

That’s not something that can be delegated. And it’s not something you want to delegate if you want to keep the integrity of that value intact.

No one needs a middle man. As a client, I’d be thinking, “If you’re just passing me off to someone else, what do I need you for? Why am I paying you the big bucks instead of just working directly with the person who is actually responsible for the relationship?”

If you want to keep the client, my best advice is to partner (not subcontract) with an Administrative Consultant in the same way that clients retain you.

The dynamic of an ongoing collaborative relationship like that is a lot different than if you were to pass the client off to someone one.

In that kind of context, the relationship with your client can be seamless and continue just as it was before because the Administrative Consultant you partner with is supporting you, not the client.

You’re still the one who has the relationship and direct communication with your clients and the one who directs whatever work is involved. Clients don’t need to know who all supports you in your business so there’s no need to approach them about anything.

If you really do need to pass the client off to someone else, if you simply are unable to maintain that direct relationship, in my book, it’s best to give that business cleanly to someone else. It’s just better for everyone involved, particularly the client.

I created all my info products while maintaing my own practice. Granted, I did have to cut down my roster, but only because I hadn’t found the right Administrative Consultant to fully support me at the time.

Still, I don’t think it’s an either/or proposition. You can maintain your practice without sacrificing the level and quality of the relationship that your clients currently enjoy with you while creating your info products methodically over time.

In my guide to creating info products and passive income streams, besides partnering with an Administrative Consultant, one of my strategies is to focus on one product per month and then reserve time for that product creation on your calendar, either a few hours a day or one day a week.

Thanks for the question! I hope this helps, and if you want to continue the dialogue to gain more clarity about what I’m proposing, feel free to post in the comment. 🙂