Policies from Pain

Guest: Kathryn Langsford

Owner of Photos by Kathryn
Vancouver, Canada

DATE: March 24, 2022

If there is one thing all humans seek to avoid, it is pain. And yet, as business owners, we often face painful moments with clients. Moments that make us question ourselves, and our talent, and our ability to build a sustainable business. Too often, in these painful moments, we find ourselves responding from a place of fear. In order to save the sale and keep our clients happy, we roll over and give in to their demands…and then feel bitter about it. 

And this starts to happen over and over and over again.

So how do we change it? How do we use these painful moments with clients to develop effective policies, principles, and processes that protect how we do business?

In today’s podcast I talk with Kathryn Langsford about some real life examples of pain points she’s experienced in her business, and the positive changes that have come out of them. The unpleasant truth is that painful interactions with clients are inevitable. It’s just part of owning a business. But we can either let them bring us down, or allow them to help us create positive processes that benefit ourselves AND our clients moving forward. 

Here’s a glance at this episode…

  • [00:59] One of the biggest pain points in the photography industry (which is the focus of today’s episode).
  • [03:15] Kathryn shares some of the biggest challenges that she dealt with in the early days of her career.  
  • [06:06] The fundamental goals of most photographers, and where so many of us go wrong on our journey of pursuing them. 
  • [09:36] How Kathryn’s session fee has increased over time.
  • [10:23] A process that Kathryn put in place to prevent clients from coming in for sessions and not ordering any portraits afterwards. 
  • [11:33] My motivation for introducing an upfront product credit.
  • [15:18] An important question that Kathryn asked herself which helped her determine her minimum price threshold.
  • [16:13] What Kathryn’s initial conversation with a client will consist of. 
  • [18:28] The principle that Kathryn and I have both based our business on, which ensures that we are serving our clients in the best way possible. 
  • [22:36] A mistake that Kathryn made in an attempt to reduce client indecision. 
  • [26:08] Why Kathryn made the decision to introduce client consultations into her business model, the resistance she faced at first, and how responded to it.
  • [31:05] Why you should never give into the inevitable push-back you will experience from clients when you change things in your business. 
  • [34:51] The factor which results in the majority of problems that we experience with clients.
  • [35:36] Kathryn shares challenging experiences that she has had over the years with a long-term client. 
  • [48:17] How Kathryn now knows she should have responded to the demands of this challenging client. 
  • [48:54] Clarity is key! 
  • [50:11] The reward that we (and our clients) receive when our processes are upheld. 

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Do The ReWork
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Allison Tyler Jones
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Kathryn Langsford
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