Friendly Friday: Is An Office Necesary?
February 10, 2012
Every Friday I feature a reader comment from earlier in the week. Today’s comment comes from Yoleine, who responded to yesterday’s post about your first meeting with potential clients. Here’s what Yoleine had to say:
“Hi, Preston! What if you don’t have office space? Do you pay for coffee or wherever you are meeting? Do you think not having an office space impacts business? Thanks!”
I’m so glad you brought this up, Yoleine, because it’s an important point. Not every event designer, DJ, planner, etc… has an office. Now, it is true that having an office is a wonderful way to put clients at ease and make them feel comfortable; they truly feel like they’re being hosted. An office is also a great way to introduce clients to your style; they will pay very close attention to how your space is laid out and decorated.
However, having an office is not essential, and, for many talented vendors, it’s also not a practical reality. And that’s okay. There are other ways to “host” potential clients. Schedule your meetings at a coffee shop or cafe that’s quiet and comfortable. Make sure the cafe’s aesthetic complements your own. If your design style is all about clean lines and minimalism, don’t take clients to a brightly colored restaurant filled with tchotchkes. On the other hand, if your style is bold and dramatic with lots of sparkle, don’t meet at a sleek and modern cocktail lounge. Remember, wherever you meet will reflect on you and your tastes.
And, yes, whether you meet for coffee or a glass of wine, I suggest you pick up the tab. In fact, I recommend arriving early and giving your credit card to the waitress ahead of time, so there’s no confusion about the bill. You’ll look very smooth and clients will be appreciative and impressed that you took care of everything without hassle.
Dear Readers, do you agree or disagree with me? Do you think having office space is crucial? Do you pay for coffee when you meet clients at a cafe? Please share your thoughts in the comments.
Happy Friday, folks. Have a great weekend. See you on Monday!