Question: Who do you trust?
Unfortunately, trust is such an abused word. Many succumb to the belief that you can’t trust anyone. Many entrepreneurs have a skewed view on trust. Consequently, the question moves beyond who do you trust, to who can you trust? Or more specifically, who can you trust with your business’ success? No one but yourself, right?
That’s a tough reality whether you’re a business owner, entrepreneur, or an employee of a company. Trust is hard to come by. It’s a harsh reality that many industries are negatively marked by the “untrustworthy” stigma.
As consumers, we deal with industries that require our “trust” to do business with them on a consistent basis. When we visit an auto shop or dealership, we must “trust” that they know best about our car and will fix it with integrity for a reasonable amount of money. This type of trust goes for lawyers, doctors, and other industries.
You just have to trust me!
Some industries are known for violating their customers’ trust. Too often you hear about businesses that are being sued, or exposed on media outlets, for their fraudulent practices. Website Design similarly can be viewed with distrust by people who’ve been “cheated” or “burned” by a Website Design company.
As a Website Designer, I empathize with people who’ve developed such distrust. Website Designers have been known to lack trustworthy service. Our industry has a lot of people who’ve provided poor service, myself included. Looking at other industries, it’s rare for an auto shop to close up while still working on your car, and even more rare for a doctor to disappear without finishing a surgical operation! You can understand why this sounds so ridiculous.
You might have been burned by a Website Designer.
I was recently on a call with a potential client (we’ll call him Jim). Jim began to share how he had been overwhelmed with the search for a new Website Designer. His business’ website is desperately overdue for a re-design, and Jim is now weary from past failed attempts with previous Website Design companies.
Jim went on to say that he had been burned by companies who had promised to build him a great website and increase sales for his company. In the end, Jim is still left with a site that (still) isn’t great and has provided no real boost in sales. Now Jim is in the midst of trying to find a qualified Website Design company who will not only be able to deliver but also prove themselves trustworthy.
As a result of his poor past experiences, Jim is now unwilling to trust a Website Designer. Unfortunately, this begins a vicious cycle in which Jim’s business repeats the process he’s experienced before with his company: wasting time and resources only to experience mediocre results from the Website Designer he will ultimately choose.
Can you blame Jim? You can say that Jim is acting as a saboteur towards his own project, and his business could ultimately suffer more wasted time and resources with poor results. But there’s a good share of blame to place on the previous companies for the lack of service and care for Jim and his business.
Though Jim may be doomed to suffer a similar fate, what can you as a business owner do differently to avoid such a poor experience with an industry marked with “untrustworthy” companies? My advice—as one business owner to another—is to look for universal traits that other businesses have and consider that in your choice for a great Website Designer.
A Website Designer you can trust is looking for a “long term” business partnership.
What does that mean? Do you have to sign away half of your company? Not at all. It means that both sides are looking to cultivate a long term relationship with a business objective in mind. The end result should benefit both the client and the Website Designer by making both more profitable and successful as the outcome of the relationship. This is a universal trait of all good businesses. Too often Web Designers are focused on short-term relationships for isolated projects, rather than a rewarding long-term relationship with a client.
I will openly say we’ve made this mistake at Mode Effect. We have been excited to do the work and have taken a project without exploring a beneficial business relationship with our client. I realize that often the relationship can start this way, but if we are a good Web Design company we have to show our interest and care for serving our clients and their business goals.
You have to get to “know” someone before you can “trust” someone.
Whether you’re looking for a romantic relationship or a business relationship the same rules will apply. If you don’t know a person, you don’t trust the person. So why do we keep falling for the same mistake of not getting to know a company and determining the best fit for a relationship before trusting them with a project or a list of services?
This is what’s difficult about the Request For Proposal process. It lacks the process of getting to know a company’s strengths, weaknesses, and compatibilities with forming a long lasting relationship that will bring value to both sides. This can create a challenge for a company looking to find a great Website Designer that is focused on providing the right care for their business.
That’s really the point: A great Website Designer whom you can “trust” is also going to bear traits that most good businesses have. At the end of the day it’s about the service care we provide for you. Heck, you could build a website on your own; however, on your own you won’t receive the expert service and care needed from a great and trustworthy Website Designer to help a business go far and meet its goals.
That’s why we do what we do at Mode Effect. We are focused on providing great service and results for our clients, and we want to see our industry do a better job of this as well.