Always ask for feedback
It must be a part of your process. You need to gain those artifacts lost in-between tasks and milestones. You’ll find it in any activity between you and the client.
Determine concerns early
No wind blows in favor of a ship without direction. — Seneca
You must know the concerns you’re there to solve. As in old quote by Seneca, you must know what direction you’re helping to move towards.
Make a list, create a Kanban board, set a wallpaper, whatever. Make it clear to yourself of the whats and whys of your day-to-day doing.
A need for testimonials
Testimonials are your bread and butter. Do you love specialty coffee with a good croissant? Good. It’s yet another reason to ask for a testimonial. It’s a law in the business of being an independent contractor, a freelancer or whatever you call yourself.
Feedback loop helps you to run faster and longer. It serves your customers and the customers of your customers much better.
Understand that you don’t need to post it or showcase it from the get-go. A testimonial is raw feedback of your activity from a client’s point-of-view. It’s the number one source to use when laying out new documents and introducing updates for the website. You can even use them to come up with those new sales pitches you think about.
By asking for feedback you are asking for access to the world which shows you the other side of your work. The side where you can see valuable patterns. They will allow you to better understand the value you’re providing.
Learn one thing. There are side effects. There’s a decent chance a simple direction of yours to a new corner might result in millions of lost value. Your words can help a C-level executive to look in a corner they have before overlooked. How can you put a value on that? It‘s huge, isn’t it?
And finally, most of us who are in the creative field have a lot of personal issues with imposter syndrome. Especially those who have started as a solo play. A great testimonial of a satisfied client speaks volumes. That satisfaction might help you swim towards that shore of utter confidence.
The lesson here is to restore that lost value. In the case of service providers, testimonials are an obvious rock to look under.
Here are a few questions to ask as an example:
- What has surprised you about working with me?
- What different would you want to do given the chance?
- Would you recommend me to your network? Why? Why not?
- Edit client testimonials only if you have permission. In case you do, keep the client’s sentiments intact.