The Password is: Dignity.

The Password is: Dignity.

In this episode, I’m discussing some viewer mail I received from “Cindy.” She is looking to attract clients who treat her with dignity and respect rather than being pains in the neck, micromanagers, unpleasable 💩s, etc.

Key topics:

✔️ In her email to me, “Cindy” uses the term dignity, which I think is perfect. Your clients SHOULD BE treating you in that way and if they are not, something’s gone awry.
✔️ When you freelance or own your own business, you get to set the rules. If you do not want to be treated like an employee by someone, then don’t put up with it. It’s like the old saying: no one rules if no one obeys.
✔️ The way that some people are treated in Corporate America stinks. It’s not a reflection of being treated with dignity; it’s all about surveillance and existing in an office version of a  police state. No thanks.
✔️ Focus on that which is wanted not that which is unwanted. Set your satellite signal to attract the people you want. Dwelling on people who grind on your nerves will not help to repel them.

Need more? Email me:


Transcription by Please forgive any typos!

Hello Hello and welcome to today’s episode of the Causey Consulting podcast. I’m your host Sara Causey and I’m also the owner of Causey Consulting, which you can find online anytime at Causey Consulting It’s hard to believe that clip was from 1985. It’s Thursday morning here, although we do have some listeners in Europe. So for you, it might actually be Thursday evening or Thursday night. I received some viewer mail from the last episode about my client, Jeff and how he had a client that said and did all the right things apparently during the intake process. But then after three days turned into a micromanager. We’ll just call this person Cindy, not her real name. And I do have permission to read an excerpt of her viewer mail to me for this episode. So here it goes. I am working as a freelancer and I love it. I wish I had been able to do this years ago. I have one client who is perfect. Someone I would label as an ideal client for my business. They treat me with dignity, and they are pleased with my work. But the other clients I have are nightmares To be honest, they often get impatient and demanding. And even when I am ahead of schedule on my deliverables to them because of their impatience and constant emails I usually feel behind. This makes me feel nervous and scatterbrained. My ideal client is definitely hands off and results oriented. My question is, how can I attract more people like that, and less people who are impatient and demanding? Great, great question. And great bit of viewer mail. Cindy, thank you for sending it to me and allowing me to read it on the air. Honestly, I feel that a lot of us relate to Jeff’s situation. Because I think just about every small business owner or Freelancer solopreneur has had someone that just slid in under the radar. In spite of our efforts to set up an appropriate moat around the castle, somebody managed to swim the moat and get past the big scary fire breathing dragons and get into the castle. And then we realized, ooh, this, this shouldn’t have happened. And I need to figure out where my safeguards let me down. And to use myself. As an example, I had a consulting client who was similar to Jeff’s hiring manager, someone who said and did all the right things during the intake call. However, hindsight, as they say, is always 2020 I thought this individual was just locked, loaded and ready to go, knew what they wanted, knew what their goal was, and didn’t want to waste a lot of time they wanted to get down to business get down to brass tacks. I don’t have anything against that. I like that kind of personality style. I like that kind of work style. no nonsense, no fluff, here’s what I want you to do for me, I’m going to pay you this money. Now go and do it. Now. I like that. So what I interpreted at the time, as this person being self assured and clear on what they wanted, I now look back in hindsight. And I think what I interpreted that way was actually desperation this individual was looking for someone, anyone to help someone, anyone to rescue them from the situation that they were in. I didn’t put those puzzle pieces together at the time, I had to learn a lesson there. And in my situation, it didn’t even take three days you know, Jeff situation was he started to get this person micromanaging him and getting all in his Kool Aid after three days. For me, it was more like about three hours this person started blowing up my telephone bill blowing up my email, and really wanting to treat me more like I was their executive admin or I was some kind of assistant or employee in their company. And so I you know, did what I often tell you guys to do you reiterate the rules of engagement. We talked about this, remember, you know that way you’re giving them an opportunity to course correct and decide if they can comply or not. This individual could not comply and I just don’t think that they could help themselves. I think they were just desperate for help. And and they were like sort of overcome by that desperation and that anxiety so we parted ways because I practice what I preach on these podcast episodes. It’s not that I get on here and tell you you need to be willing to let a client go if things are rapidly rolling downhill. And you realize, Oh, I shouldn’t have done this. Now I’m willing to pony up and do the same thing. Obviously, you always want to avoid those mistakes, you want to avoid bringing somebody into the fold that you shouldn’t have an ounce of prevention is really worth about 100 pounds of cure, in that case, but when it’s time to rip the band aid off, you have to cowgirl or cowboy up and do it. Something I really like in Cindy’s email is this phrase, they treat me with dignity. That is an excellent way of putting it and dignity is an excellent word to use for it. Things like respect and authority figure expert also come to my mind. But I really do like that choice of word dignity. One definition of dignity says that dignity is the right of a person to be valued and respected for their own sake, and to be treated ethically. If you’ll allow me a slight digression here, I want to make an important point, the way that some people are treated in corporate America, especially in these corporate Pan opticon cultures, where you’re constantly being surveilled, or you’re in an environment where as far as you know, you’re constantly being surveilled. It’s not treating employees, in my opinion, with dignity. If you have to just constantly monitor what people are doing, you need to always be looking over their shoulder spying on them, or you need to be putting security cameras up to monitor what time they came in. How long was their lunch break? What time did they leave? How many times did Susie get up and go to Bobby’s cubicle and talk? Did the manager spend too much time in their office? Did somebody take too many smoke breaks? Did somebody take too many coffee breaks? It really tells me that there’s a problem with your company culture. People always want to look to the employee and go, Oh, no, no, no, that guy’s problem. He gets up too much. You know, those two ladies over there that gossip too much. It’s not my company. It’s not my culture. It’s everybody else isn’t. It’s like the candidates that come in to interview and every place they’ve ever worked has been a shithole every boss they’ve ever had has been an ass. And it’s like, everyone. I mean, maybe you know that that could be true, but it’s like, it kind of casts a little bit of doubt on a person’s credibility. If they’re telling you everyone they’ve ever known in their whole life was a sack of crap. Like, everybody, like you never encountered anybody good or decent in the whole wide world. That seems a bit improbable. If you’re a frequent tuner, enter, I’m going to bang a drum that you’ve heard me bang before. You can in your own small business, your own solopreneur ship, your own freelancing career, you’re gigging whatever it is that you’re doing, to be self employed, and to make your own way in the world. You can create or recreate your own personal hell. If you take things from corporate America, that you detested a system of working a system of surveillance, a system of putting your customers up on a pedestal, and feeling like you know, if you make the slightest mistake, or if you don’t answer an email, they send you within 2.5 seconds, you’re lousy at what you do. You can generate your own misery. It’s like waking up at two in the morning and playing your mind’s worst hit. Instead of playing your greatest hits and thinking about all the wonderful things you’ve accomplished, you know, your anxiety starts playing your worst moments. And oh my god, remember, in seventh grade, when I tripped and fell in the hallway, and everybody laughed at me, that’s the kind of stuff that we tend to remember when we wake up in the middle of the night. And we’re thinking about, you know, negative things, you can do that to yourself, in your own business. And I think it’s interesting that Cindy has been able to attract and bring in somebody who has an ideal client that treats her with dignity and is pleased by what she does for them. And that’s a very good sign. So she is already seeing that it’s possible. Those people do exist on planet Earth. Now she has to set about the work of clearing out these people who are impatient and demanding. They make her feel nervous, they throw her off her game. And to answer her question, how can I attract more people like that and less people who are impatient and demanding? You just do it. Yeah, I know. You’re probably sitting there waiting for me to give you some alchemy formula like I’m going to go into the lab like Faust and try to turn base metal into gold. That’s not what you do. You don’t try to turn base metal into gold. You don’t try to take people who are by nature, impatient and demanding that They want to micromanage you, they want to treat you like an employee rather than a consultant or Freelancer trying to elevate. Someone who just has that micromanagement personality wants to bark out orders, it would take you so long to try to get that person up to speed, it’s frankly not worth it, in my opinion to try to do that. My first piece of advice is to get your mind right. Go into your meditation book, a quiet part of your house, a quiet space outside, or go to your desk and open up a blank sheet of paper, a notebook that you keep and journal about it. Whether you want to picture it in your mind’s eye, in a meditation, like a little mind movie, or whether you want to do it as a journaling activity. You want to get clear on what an ideal client an ideal prospect looks like for you. Now, I don’t mean physically, I’m talking about how do they treat you? Do they respect your work style. And I’ve used the example before, of maybe you’re not a morning person, and you want to be able to work in the afternoon in the evening without any hassle, write that down, or visualize that visualize yourself working at two o’clock in the afternoon and being asleep at 8am. If that’s what you want to do, it really does start with your mind. So I don’t want you to focus on that which is unwanted. Like in Cindy’s situation, she needs to remove focus from people that are not ideal. individuals that are impatient, demanding they make her feel scatterbrain throw her off, she needs to de emphasize those individuals, and begin calibrating her mental signal towards people who are wanted. What are the characteristics? See, she has an advantage here being able to draw from someone who already is an ideal client for her business, someone or company, whoever it is, it’s treating her with dignity, and they’re happy with her work output. begin to look at what characteristics that company has or that person. Are they a large company, a small company, a startup, a global fortune 100? firm? They have a lot of employees, they have a few employees? What is their culture? Like? What is it that you can look at in that ideal client that you could potentially begin to duplicate in your other clients? And if you’re listening to this broadcast, and you’re saying, Well, you know, Sarah, unfortunately, I don’t have any ideal clients right now. I don’t have anybody that like Cindy, I would say treats me with dignity and is pleased with my work. Maybe you’re pre revenue, and you’re just trying to get started. Or maybe you have gotten started and you’ve let people into the business that are causing you major headaches. Go General, get in your journal, go in your meditation book and start thinking about in general, who would I like to work with? How do they treat me? Are they laws I fair and relaxed? Are they results oriented? Do they respect the rules of engagement? Like it you don’t have to know every specific detail, you don’t have to automatically be able to rough out all the demographics. Well, this is a large fortune 100 company and they have approximately 1 million employees worldwide. They’re trading on NASDAQ, you don’t have to get that specific. If you don’t know the answer to those questions, then you can start out General, they respect my time they see me as an authority figure. By and large, I’m left alone, I can work with independence and autonomy. I give them a great outcome. They’re happy with what I do. This is one place I believe where visualization, even if you want to get out the sheet of paper or your journal and write this down, which is also a great technique. I think supplementing it with visual activity in your brain, the little mind movie is so helpful. You know, picture yourself opening an email that says we love the work that you’re doing. We’re so glad we connected with you. Or picture yourself if you’re more of an extrovert than I am, and you like getting on a zoom call, picture yourself on a zoom call with the person on the on the other screen telling you man, this is the best outcome we’ve ever had. We are so glad we hired you. You’re the best insert your job here that we’ve ever worked with. It gives you positive momentum. And it begins sitting sending out that signal to the universe, God whatever it is that you believe in, it starts sending the signal out. That will attract the right people, the more that you sit and fester and stew on God, I left corporate America to freelance and now all my clients are buttholes and they don’t leave me alone. They don’t respect me I just feel very put upon. The more that you start to stew in your own juices about stuff like that, the harder it is to get out of it. Here’s a you know potentially uncomfortable truth. You’ve heard me talk before about some people would rather hear comfortable fluffy lies than the uncomfortable truth about something. Here’s a potentially uncomfortable truth for you. People are bandwagon oriented, and they are at times herd animals rather than non conformists. Some people like to think that they’re a lot more rebellious than they actually are. Individuals, companies, and they like to hitch their wagon to a winner. They like to make sure that they’re engaging with someone who has a positive attitude, they’re confident that they can solve the problems and they’re not downtrodden, they’re not beat down. They’re not getting on the phone sounded like, Alright, what can I do for you today, you know, they they enjoy engaging with individuals that are already winning. And even if you have to fake it till you make it a little bit, even if you have to, like you know, do some jumping jacks or listen to some type of motivational recording on YouTube before you get on the phone with somebody or before you start work for the day. Get yourself into that positive mindset. I have recommended before to clients to spend five minutes before you ever open your laptop or log into your computer however it is that you’re working just five minutes. That’s it, just give me five minutes of you. visualizing success. You picturing clients telling you something positive, you envision emails coming in with requests for quotes or requests for information that are coming from ideal awesomesauce clients, you will be amazed at how quickly these things show up and manifest in your life. I have had situations where I visualize something and then two or three weeks later, somebody sent me an email or an item that I swear to you was word for word, what I pictured in my visualization, you want to talk about Einstein’s a spooky action at a distance, it can get a little eerie sometimes just how spot on your visualizations can be when they come true. Therefore, I would much rather that you spend your time visualizing the types of clients that you want to bring in rather than worrying and kvetching about the types of clients you don’t want to bring in. My second piece of advice is don’t be afraid to say no, you should be more willing to filter people out than filter people in. Sometimes people in sales, people that own a business or they freelance, they get happy IRS, they think anybody that’s willing to get on the phone with them. Anybody that sends them a request for information is an ideal prospect. They get so wrapped up in the scarcity mentality of well, if I don’t take this person on as a client, I don’t know how long it’s going to be before somebody comes along. You know, what if I starve to death in the street? Because I didn’t answer Billy Bob’s request for a quote, even though he did not seem to be an ideal client at all. They let the what ifs and the anxiety and the scarcity mentality take hold. You are the prize. You’re the authority figure, you are the expert. You have to guard yourself, your business and your time, jealously. Not everybody that comes up and taps you on the shoulder is somebody who is an ideal prospect or ideal client for you. It may be that that person is nice and kind and wonderful. They just don’t have a problem that you specialize in solving, or they don’t have the right kind of attitude and demeanor for you to be able to help them. And to use the personal training example, if somebody comes to a personal trainer and says, Yeah, I’m motivated, let’s do this. But then they miss every other workout. And when they are there, they don’t seem to have any like, oh, at all. They’re just, they’re kind of just like, okay, I’ll slog my way through this and say I showed up. That’s not the personal trainers fault. And the trainer can’t do anything to like, inject motivation into that person. They either want to show up, put their work in or they don’t. And if they don’t, they’re better off leaving the personal trainers gym than continuing to show up with a bad attitude and a lot of apathy. Maybe that sounds harsh to some of you, but it’s true. The third and final thing I will say on this is this is also a reason why I am such an evangelist for testing and beta testing. And sometimes you may have an established business and things suddenly start to go a little bit wonky and you think well, I have tested and beta tested this and everything was going well for six months or for six years. Whatever the case may be. Markets change trends change technology, Lord knows changes all the time. You may have to go back to the drawing board sometimes and test and beta test again. It is so crucial To get the data that you need, it’s crucial to know is this idea going to sprout wings and fly or is it about to splat on the ground, if you can know that ahead of time and prevent the bloody splatty mess at the bottom of the Grand Canyon, it’s so much better than having to pick yourself up after you’ve a disaster has befallen you. So in Cindy’s case, since she does already have one client that is treating her well. And she describes as an ideal client, she can look for potential commonalities there, I want to find other companies or other individuals that are like this ideal client, whether it’s soft skills that she’s looking for, whether it’s demographics, whatever the situation may be, or some combination of both, she can begin to try to duplicate that ideal client into other ideal clients until she has a full book of business. And she’s making the kind of revenue that she wants to make. That’s no excuse to skip the mindset work, because that’s important too. And she may have to do some testing and beta testing to figure out how to duplicate that ideal client. But it’s time and effort well spent to make sure that as you’re showing up in your business or your freelancing practice every day, you’re really free and empowered to work in the way that you want to work. I mean, after all, when you left corporate america behind and decided on self employment, isn’t that the kind of independence and autonomy that you wanted? If you enjoyed today’s episode, please share it. If you haven’t already, take a quick second to subscribe to this podcast and leave a review for us on iTunes. Bye for now.

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