Photo by Jeff Sheldon

We all mean well, especially when we meet new people or embark on new projects. Think about your personal life for a moment. Have you ever walked out of an inspiring movie and said to yourself, “Tomorrow, I am going to make some big changes”? Have you ever gotten together with family and friends around the holidays or at a reunion and then vowed, “I am going to do better keeping up with the people who matter”? Have you ever walked around the yard making a mental list and promised, “I will complete all of these important projects this year”? The answer to all of these questions is most likely, “of course,” but for a variety of reasons, sometimes the reality did not live up to the intention. The initial enthusiasm gave way to the pressures and rigors of ordinary life, and the same thing often happens in businesses.

Recently I met with a client whose business is doing well, but he was hoping to further his company’s website content production, and accompanying social media strategy. The Sumus team arrived for a scheduled meeting, and trust me, optimism and enthusiasm were in the air on both sides. After going through the game plans, roles, and mechanics of how a potential partnership could flourish, a contract was drawn up and both sides put pen to paper.

It is worth noting here that during the get-together, aggressive timelines were set up to ensure that the content and promotion campaigns were to be initiated concurrently and immediately. Both parties were in accord on every aspect of the project—that was to be run over a 4-month period.

The centerpiece of the content production was a set of scientific white papers that were to be posted in a new section of the company website, and then promoted via various social media platforms. In order to commence the research, brief meetings were to be set up between our Sumus writer and the company’s Subject Matter Experts (SMEs). And by brief, I mean 15 minutes or fewer. After these short phone calls, we would be ready to go off on our own and produce the papers for feedback and editing.

For whatever reasons, the meetings were slow to be scheduled, and the entire project was immediately off schedule. I am quite certain this sort of thing occurs in many business interactions, and the question is (after politely following up in earnest several times): what do you do about it?  After a certain amount of time—maybe a week, maybe a month—a pre-scheduled invoice is to be generated, but the corresponding work is not complete.

At Sumus, we have faced these scenarios and have learned strategies to best work with clients. In the end, the main goals should be to retain an excellent rapport with the client, get the work done well and on time, and make a bit of money too. We can help you accomplish all of these things, so please contact us.


Jim Baker

Jim Baker

Sumus was founded by Jim Baker, an entrepreneur with 27 years’ experience bootstrapping and growing his business organically and through acquisition, to share his experience by providing advisory services around Board representation, Organization and Branding Strategy, Mergers & Acquisitions, Value enhancement and Exit strategy.

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