Tag Archives: pricing

Are you falling prey to ‘Cobbler’s Shoes’ syndrome?

Well, are you? I noted just this morning, that I am.

Let me explain what I mean.Cobblers Shoes

You may have heard the saying, ‘the cobbler’s shoes are always the worst heeled’ – meaning that whilst we’re good at giving great advice to others, and helping others to succeed, we don’t necessarily take or action our own advice.

I haven’t blogged for a while on the Carvill site as I’ve been head down writing my third book. Believe me, there are literally hundreds of stories and insights I’m going to be sharing once it’s over the line, (and it nearly is), but for the past 6 months any writing focus has been purely on building great content for my chapters.

That said, as is always the case, there’s a fair bit of plate spinning happening. And we’re in the process of revamping the Carvill website.

I took a short break from my writing just this morning as I had a query from my head of design, which led me back to our site to check on something, so I could respond.

And that’s when I had my cobbler’s shoes moment. That moment, where you look at something that’s yours and you think, if this was a client’s site – I’d have advised they do that totally differently.

Don’t get me wrong, our current site isn’t dreadful – but there are gems within it, which are totally hidden from view.

For example: this testimonial from Ollie Sharpe, UK Sales Manager – Staffing and Search at LinkedIn.

“The Business of Being Social has become a useful resource within the LinkedIn sales team.

The book really helped us to understand the bigger picture of social media and it was instrumental when we changed the way that we work with clients. It helped us to develop how we consult with our clients and advise them on how to build a social media strategy.

We were missing the critical aspects that social media channels enable, such as continuous conversations, brand proposition and getting employees on board to strengthen both brand and message.

From what we have learned from the book, we now advise companies to build their followers, engage them with content, and this will enable them to do what they do best – recruit!

The Business of Being Social is now a must read for all new recruits into my LinkedIn sales team – and has become an integral part of our training.

Highly practical – yet at the same time, highly insightful. A really useful tool for all businesses, either starting out or looking at how to optimise their social media activity.”

Wonderful right? Powerful even. However, pretty much invisible on our site.

In fact, the points Ollie raises about the book helping him and his team to see the bigger picture, build social media strategy, focus on continuous conversations, understand how social impacts brand positioning and the importance of galvanising employees to strengthen the message – these aren’t just aspects that are in that book, but they are key aspects of the services that we as a team within Carvill deliver to our clients.  The book is the outcome of experience, not theory.

When revamping our site, I want such key messages to be up front and centre, a key component showcasing who we are, why we do what we do and the social proof that we do it.

Our value proposition currently focuses on the features we offer – but look at any other social media and digital agency and they’ll all pretty much have similar features.

The key focus should be on the difference you make to the audiences you serve.

I know this, it’s what I preach – so why haven’t we heeded our own advice? Too busy serving others.  And whilst the metaphor of, you can’t serve others from an empty teapot tends to focus on well-being, so too is it relevant when sharing expertise. You need to be walking the walk.

My cobbler’s shoes moment hit home hard this morning. And I wanted to share it, because, I have a suspicion that there may be some of you that focus so much on delivering to others, and like the cobbler with worn out heels, you too could do with a bit of taking stock and heeding your own skill and advice too.

As always – any questions tweet me @michellecarvill or email michelle@carvillcreative.co.uk 

Michelle Carvill, best selling business author, speaker, founder and Director at Carvill – the social media agency focused on creating authentic engagement. Currently penning her third book: Get Social – Practical Strategies and Tactics for Leaders – to be published by Kogan Page in  Spring 2018. For information about how team Carvill can help you or your team with  social media marketing – either strategy, training, coaching or day to day management – simply get in touch.

 

 

 

The Gift of Experience – Knowing where to tap

The Gift of Experience – Knowing where to tap

In a time strapped world – where time is precious and a rare Screen Shot 2017-05-21 at 07.48.33commodity, it’s no surprise that when valuing our services – we focus on the time it takes to do something, rather than the time we’ve invested to know how to do something. And the impact we’ve created.

Just this week I was reminded of the value of experience.

Heading on a train to a client ‘inter-agency’ meeting, I had arranged to travel with the person who heads up the client’s PR agency.

As you would expect, we spent the first part of the journey chatting about work, busy lives etc etc.

During our chat – she happened to mention that she was getting some push back from another client on fees. Their view was that, even though she’d solved their problem and saved the day, because she’d been able to deliver something so quickly for them, then it can’t have taken up so much of her time – and how was she justifying the rate.

Were they 100% happy with what she’d provided – YES

Had she 100% met their brief – on time / meeting objectives – YES (and some – she’d saved the day).

What was interesting is that during the conversation she herself started to justify their view – ‘Well, I guess it didn’t take me that long to pull the pieces together for them’.

Hmmm…

My question to her:

1)   How long have you been doing what you’ve been doing? The training, the honing of your skill, the years building experience?

Her response… ‘Over twenty five years’.

So, what value then do we give to experience? Colleagues with less experience may have struggled to come up with the goods to fully satisfy the client need in so short a time.

It reminded me of the wonderful anecdote about the cruise ship…

Just as the giant cruise ship was about to depart, fully laden with passengers, the engine failed.

Panic quickly ensued as various teams of engineers failed to restart the engine and the passengers became ever more irate.

A retired ship engineer who lived locally was summoned.

He embarked with his small bag of tools and inspected the engine very carefully. Having completed his inspection, he reached into his bag and pulled out a hammer and gently tapped something.

Instantly, the engine lurched into life. It was fixed.

A week later the owners received a bill from the old man of $10000.

“What?!” the owners exclaimed. “He hardly did anything.” The owners wrote to the old man and asked him to submit an itemized invoice, which he duly did:

The invoice read:

Tapping with a hammer…….. $2.00

Knowing where to tap…….. $9998.00

Love that.

Your Key Takeaway:

Don’t underestimate the value of your experience. Both in honing your art and learning how to overcome challenges.

I’m not saying that experience counts for everything, it doesn’t. You have to have a growth mindset and have been willing and eager to continuously learn over the years too. But experience certainly gives you the learning and growing that can only come through the passage of time and of experiencing a broad range of scenarios.

It gives you the networks you’ve contributed to to draw upon, the relationships you’ve developed.  And the knowledge that comes from experience.

Sometimes, if I can’t make a meeting with a client and I offer to send one of my less experienced members of the team – it’s not unusual that the client is adamant it’s me they want to see.

Now that’s not because they prefer me personally than any of my team – it’s down to the fact that I’m the one with the most experience in our team. I’m the one with the grey hair – so to speak, I’ve been around the block, learned way more than I was ever taught in business school – I’ve put in the 10,000+ hours – and have always been committed to honing (and continue to be committed to hone) my skills.

So the next time you’re being challenged on fees – just ponder the fact that you know exactly where to tap – and rather than value yourself on time to action, value yourself on impact of your action.

Would love to hear your views – tweet me, comment, and share if you too have someone you need to remind about just how ‘valuable’ they really are.

As always – any questions tweet me @michellecarvill or email michelle@carvillcreative.co.uk 

Michelle Carvill, best selling business author, speaker, founder and Director at Carvill – the social media agency focused on creating authentic engagement. Currently penning her second book: Get Social – Practical Strategies and Tactics for Leaders – to be published by Kogan Page in  Spring 2018. For information about how team Carvill can help you or your team with  social media marketing – either strategy, training or day to day management – simply get in touch.