Truth is a verb

Have you ever had a circumstance where you have been unsure about what to say to a customer, or an employee, or a potential partner?

Unlike the movies, we don’t usually have perfectly scripted lines that make for a happy ending.

Here are a few actual case studies. The names have been changed to protect the innocent.

1) You’re a contractor who works on a “cost-plus” basis. You give your customers an estimate before you begin any work, but the estimate is always too low.

The customers make changes, and usually, you are overly optimistic about the time it will take to complete jobs.

You have a customer who has been great to work with, but you’ve just realized that this project will be 20% over the original estimate of $450,000.

That means the project will be $90,000 over the original budget. How do you handle it?

2) You have a great employee who always does quality work, on time and on budget. But they don’t play well with others.

They like to control everything and do it all themselves, and they won’t ask for help, or really help anyone else.

The whole office is suffering. How do you handle this?

3) You have an opportunity to purchase a business that will strategically strengthen your business. The owner is in a hurry to sell and is pushing you to make a decision.

Only, you have 3 other important initiatives and really cannot devote the time to doing your due diligence on the potential acquisition for 3 months. How should you handle it with the other owner?

The cases are all different, but the solution to me is simple: Just tell them the truth.

Level with the customer about the changes and overages. Have a frank discussion with your employee. And tell the other owner that you’ll have time in 3 months to consider their offer.

Have a direct conversations and tell them the truth.

You’ll get to where you want to get faster, and you’ll eliminate the stress of worrying about what the other person is thinking. You’ll know.

All the best!


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