There are occasions when you need to make a change to a client arrangement, but you fear spoiling the positive relationship you have built-up with the client. This is especially risky when the client is perfectly happy with the current arrangement, and you have been regularly delivering value to them.
Most frequently you would want to make a change because you believe your fee is too low, but there are some other reasons why change is a must for you, including client support (or lack of it) and unrealistic expectations of the client and/or their team.
It’s a tricky situation to handle, so here are three tips that you may find useful.
Add more Value
Find a little extra to give to the client that they will value. Some extra training, a master workshop, or maybe as simple as giving some additional access to you for the client’s team.
Let your client know that some of your other clients have now hopped on to your new Platinum arrangement. Given your history with this particular client it would seem pertinent to invite them to join this ‘elite’ program too. Of course you only offer this to your very special clients!
Depending on just how critical the change is to your business, you may feel that there is no choice but to make the change. The best approach is to explain in detail why the change is necessary and why you cannot retain the status-quo. Most serious reasons are the damage to your business if you don’t change, and harming your personal welfare.
When using any of these, it is best to be firm and honest with the client. And as always, before you talk to the client, consider what you want want to achieve from the discussion, and what your fall-back position is if you don’t get it.