I’ve been working for days on my Work With Me copy for this website.
No, wait. I’ve been working on it for months. If I’m completely honest? Probably a whole year.
I write it, I love it, I like it, I hate it … I tell no one about it. Then I repeat the cycle all over again.
Irony? When I work with others I help them do this for themselves ALL the TIME. But doing it for myself? It just feels impossible.
So as I sit here making another round of revisions, 4 pages of notes laid out in front of me, I started thinking about it.
What the hell is my problem here? What is the road block?
(You see, the good thing about being a coach is knowing what questions to ask myself. Even if I don’t like the answers.)
So as I procrastiworked by analyzing my problem instead of writing my own copy, I got really clear on what is going on.
I’m telling myself the bullshit story that if my copy isn’t perfect, no one will hire me.
I’m putting all this pressure on myself that my copy must be witty and perfect. Enchanting. Adorable. Precisely me, as if you were listening to speak at my most brilliant moment EVER when you were reading it. You will then immediately relate and beg me to work with you because you simply MUST have exactly what I offer.
Here is the catch to all of that — what I offer to my coaching clients has some fluidity based on what they need. Since I am a coach, I’m also able to adapt how I describe it, and how I teach, based on how you hear. A skill I’ve learned over the years is being able to be fluid so that it resonates for you.
Which means that I’ll never have just one perfect way of describing it.
I need to stop circling around this perfection concept.
I need to embrace what I’ve always known and taught so many other people – there is POWER in polarizing.
I need to be ME, and talk about it just as I would in a conversation. My passion. My love for helping people get comfortable in their own skin so that they can be the best entrepreneurs possible and put themselves out there online.
I need to follow my own advice.
I’m owning this publicly so that I can now go and DO IT. These 4 pages of notes are full of gems of brilliance. It doesn’t have to be perfect, it has to be honest. Real. VULNERABLE. My story woven with the story that I wish for you, because people connect through the power of stories. That is why blogging is so essential for your business. If you want your clients to know you, to like you, to TRUST YOU … you have to let go of perfection and sink in to vulnerability.
I owe it to you to share this with you, to share with you the power of working with me. That may sound a bit odd, but really it isn’t. If you’re my ideal client? Hiding my brilliance doesn’t serve me, and it definitely doesn’t serve YOU. Which is what I want more than anything in the long run.
Perfection isn’t what brings you success. Vulnerability and overcoming your FEAR does that. You have to show up and BE SEEN.
When I see the posts in forums and groups, they often start out the same way.
I’m starting a new business.
I know I need to have a contract.
I don’t have a lot of money to spend right now.
Then the big question… “Does anyone have a contract they can share with me?”
Often followed by a second comment, “I don’t want my contract to have a lot of legal speak in it. I don’t want to scare clients away.”
If you ever want to see me respond to a post with fists of fury, speed typing as fast as I can? Post a version of this post. I’ll try to film what happens, but no guarantee that a modern-day camera could even document it. It is THAT fast.
Get Your Contract from a Lawyer, Not Your Peers
Let’s say you’re a wedding cake baker, and you’re asking another cake baker to share their contract with you. Did they go to law school? Did they write their own contract? Where did it come from? How do you know it is even legally binding?
You don’t. You know that she makes a bad-ass buttercream frosting, but you do not know that she knows the law. Stick to recipes here, ok?
Lawyers go through a number of classes to help them learn the exact words to use in a contract. Every. Word. Matters. Words in contracts have nuances that you and I have no clue about. (Unless you are reading this and you went to law school.) Changing those words up has an impact on you if you should ever find yourself in court with a client.
An important thing to remember – your contract doesn’t just protect you, it also protects your client. So if the wording is unclear, and a client takes you to court, it could end up protecting them MORE than it protects you, and you could lose everything. All over the spoiled buttercream frosting – you really should have stuck to getting a good recipe from that other baker.
Think I’m crazy? You can read here all about the comma that cost a company almost a million dollars: New York Times: The Comma That Costs 1 Million Dollars (Canadian).
You need to know WHERE your contract came from, and that it is a trusted source that could support you in the court of law.
You don’t want clients getting out of payments because of a loophole. Or really, any other number of things that might happen to your business. Just don’t do it. Do not ask your peers for a contract.
I know you think that you can’t afford to do it — but you also can’t afford NOT to do it and to lose it all!Feel like you can't afford a business contract from a lawyer? This thinking could cost you MORE! Click To Tweet
Starting with a contract from a lawyer? So much safer than trying to do it yourself and ending up in legal trouble! Rachel is a lawyer who also has her MBA and is an entrepreneur. Want to know more about her? She was a guest on the very first Business, Brilliantly podcast.
About the Legal Speak Thing in Contracts
Adding another layer to the possible mess of this whole contract situation is if you take a well worded contract and decide that it needs to not be so scary.
After all, you don’t want someone to be intimidated by all of those legal terms and not sign it, right?
I’ve already covered above the initial problem with thinking like this – it could land you in hot water and cost you a fortune if something happens and things go wrong.
There is a secondary problem here as well, looming in the background. When was the last time you purchased something that had a long contract attached and you said, “Nope! Too many legal terms. Forget it!”
Most people buy a car or a home while barely reading what the contract even says. Once you have made the decision to purchase something? The legal wording isn’t of much consequence. You might ask for explanations of paragraphs, but beyond that you just sign your name so many times your hand cramps up.Legal speak in contracts protects you & your clients. Don't edit it in fear they won't sign. Click To Tweet
If you believe in what you are selling, you know that it is accurately priced, and that you will provide the service requested? You have nothing to fear when it comes to presenting that contract. They have already agreed to work with you, the contract is simply a formality.
I get it. Putting yourself out there is scary. Never apologize for it though, and do not fear that your contract will turn them away. Want to talk more about your business? Let me know!