Julie Morgenstern is a professional organizer extraordinaire. One of the secrets to her success is she preaches that everyone must design their systems (work or home) based on “their unique goals, habit and style”.
Her SHED system—more on this in a moment—is the perfect filter to take a fresh look at your client base. Because we know that the clients you choose to serve directly impact the quality of your work, your earnings and the amount of joy you reap from your day. If your current blend isn’t working for you, read on.
The heart of Julie’s approach (which you can read more about here) is a 4-step process she calls SHED:
Separate the treasures. Which clients are truly treasures? They might push you to constantly stretch your capabilities or perhaps they have issues that pique your curiosity. Maybe, they are just plain fun to work with and you’d miss them terribly if they went elsewhere.
Heave the trash. Clients who challenge you (in ways that are not productive) take up space that your treasures could occupy. There is a time to ask even long-term clients to go. Remember, your treasures can get lost as you busily serve the most demanding, yet least fulfilling, on your roster.
Embrace your identity. For most advisors, it’s easier to consider your identity in relation to your client base. Who makes you feel like work is a joy? And who saps your energy? Hint: cringing when you see their email in your inbox is not a good sign. Remember, the definition gets to be yours—one man’s difficult client is another’s treasure.
Drive yourself forward. Once you’re focused on your treasures, have rid yourself of what drags you down and are clear on your unique value, all that’s left is to speed forward. The extra energy you’ve created will help drive you to create the work you were made to do.
Who do you need to SHED?