A few months ago, I was at the office of a company I had worked for for a year or two.
The company was selling advertising space on a public website, and the clients were trying to buy ads on it.
I was there to talk to the people who had put money into the business, and I was to do what I could to make them feel comfortable.
I did that by giving them good advice, and then, in my next conversation, by asking them what their next move was.
I tried to be open, to make it clear that I wanted to keep working with them, that I was committed to them, and that I had a lot of confidence in them.
But there were two things I did not say to the clients: First, that they were good clients, and secondly, that the company was in good hands.
I never talked to the company about the ads.
I only asked them if they were happy with the ads, and they all said no.
But the client’s trust was at stake, so I was prepared to walk away.
The second thing I didn’t say to them was that I did want to keep going.
The client knew that I loved the company and that the business was going to thrive, so the next time I saw him I told him, “I’m sorry, you’re on your own.
If you don’t want to work with me anymore, then I’m not going to give you another opportunity.”
I did this in the hope that he would keep working for the company.
After a while, though, the client started to see the error of his ways.
When he first started working for us, he seemed friendly and welcoming, but after a while he started making it very clear that he wanted to be replaced.
His attitude started to change.
One day he came in and said, “You know, I’m going to tell you something.
I want to quit.”
And I said, I know you’re not doing this for me.
What I’m doing is making the same mistake that I made when I left the business.
I don’t trust you to keep your word.
You don’t have the confidence to keep doing what you’re doing.
You’re just being dishonest, and you’ve already broken the trust of your clients.
I have a list of clients, all of whom I have worked with in the past, that are now paying me money and who don’t like what I’m saying.
You know, the clients I’ve worked with have told me that I’ve been honest, and if I’m honest, they feel like they can trust me.
They’re not willing to give me money, but they’re willing to trust me with the future of the company, and it’s not easy to do that.
They have no idea how much work I do to help them, how much money I have to keep them happy, or how much time I have.
I’ve never been a money-grubber.
I do all that for free.
I’m the one who gives the clients the opportunity to see that it’s okay to work for me, and to trust that I’ll make it through whatever they’re going through.
The last thing I want for them is to be unhappy.
But that is what’s happening now, in Canada.
Every year, a new number of people leave advertising companies because of poor relationships with their agents and with the companies that hire them.
I had to make some tough decisions.
I needed to take a risk, and my clients did, too.
The clients who I know would have made the best decision about their future are now being left with no choice but to go through a lot more uncertainty and anger.
I hope that my advice will be useful to all those who want to leave a job that’s rewarding, but can’t be as rewarding for them as they were before.
I’d like to hear from you.
How can you be an advertising professional in this climate?
Do you have a tip for someone who might be considering a career in advertising?
Do they have a question you would like to ask me?
Send it to the [email protected]