client engagement basics: all hail the mighty client!

Customers get a bad rap. Whether you are a new business trying to find some or an existing business trying to please the ones you have, positive client engagement seems to be a lofty goal. How will you ever get there?

It starts with four words: How. Am. I. Doing?


image via creative commons

A lot of people fear client feedback, and with good reason.

Customer service platitudes tell us that for every one customer that says something pleasant about our service or product, there are a million with horror stories about terrible experiences, providers, and products that they are spreading through their networks.

And, what if we have room to improve? What if the client has real feedback about where you can improve? (We are entering into deep gremlin-land here.) AND you are supposed to be helping your client: is it really right to ask them to help you?

Yes. Absolutely, without a doubt, yes.

With all of those hesitations plus more, two weeks ago, I asked two of my clients to provide case study details for some of the marketing I am doing on (the directory for coaches). The results were invaluable.

Hard Truth: I heard the hard truth from my clients about what I was doing well as a coach and where I could have been more rigorous.  Fully take that in: the client in no uncertain terms identified how they benefitted from working with me and what else they could have found helpful. Power boost and client insight!

Feet to the Fire: My client identified a couple of areas where I was thinking of expanding my business, and systems and processes that would have been helpful in their experiences. Hearing the client tell me what I already knew what needed to be done moved those items WAY up on the “working on the business” to-do list.

Bottom Line: Both clients I spoke with were in different situations, one recently completed and one still in a coaching program. In each case, I was able to identify the bottom line problem that came to coaching to look to solve and the changes that they have made as a result of working with me.  Both clients explained what they achieved in their own words: invaluable to future marketing efforts!

Scared? Yes I was.

But taking the one hour to go through case study details with these clients gave much more back to the business than I could ever imagine. I was invigorated, re-affirmed and excited by what I heard. Want to hear the what two clients said about working with me? There is Sam  and Gillian.

Take the jump. Open up and ask your clients: “How am I doing?”

Can’t wait to hear your results.

your first time – the best case scenario

Newschwanstein Castle.

Your first time. The first time. The first step.

All great things start with that first step, but that first single step is often the hardest to take.

You should probably avoid it! Hide! There is always some reason why you will never have to face getting what you want.

First steps kick up gremlin-storms, bringing your brain into freak-the-fuck-out zone.

But the best news is that once you take the first step, it’s OVER! Now, you are walking. I used that mantra “one step, one bloody step, one step” all the way up the hill to Neuschwanstein, in the Bavarian Alps (pictured above).

But about Your First Time…

What if your first time [fill-in-the-blanks]-ing was exactly as you want it to be? Imagine: what would it feel like? What would it mean for you? What’s important?

Jump onto the other side of that first step and enjoy the view from the top of Mount Awesome!

Imagine: you are starting a new job. It is a great opportunity. You are really pleased to be doing this work!

…then your brain makes up the WORST case scenarios. Your colleagues might be awful. The job is not what you thought it would be. THERE ARE BATS! (errr….)

Some time before you begin to make up things about bats infesting your new basement dungeon office, stop. Think about the best case scenario. 

At the end of the first month of this new work: how do feel about your colleagues? What has been surprising? How stimulated are you by the work you are doing? What’s the energy like?

Your first time. The first time. The first step.

If you are standing before your next first step, ask yourself: what is the best case scenario? What do I really want from this?



P.S. I betcha you get it.

Super Better: Jane McGonigal and Gaming to Improve Your Life

You know those special people in your life who act like messengers? Not in the “voice of the universe” kind of way (well, maybe that too), but the ones who send you seriously KICK ASS resources just because?

I have a couple of those people, and among my favourites is Shane Lawrence. Shane keeps me afloat on user technology news and events and personal development tidbits that he scours from the ends of the interwebs.

Shane is amazing, his picks are amazing and I am trying to figure out how to make him a guest columnist. (hmm..hrrr…) TBC.

This treat is a share from Shane. In this TED Talk, Jane uses gaming methodology: superheros, missions, earning points, etc. to explain her thought process through her recovery from a traumatic brain injury. Moving on, she used the same methodology to develop a game called Super Better: a game that gets you super better! Cute.

Makes me understand the gamers in my life a lot better and what a cool and effective tool!

Get Your Shit Together – Managing and Organizing Your Projects

In this episode:

We tackle staying organized in this digital/analogy information world and always moving the ball forward in our projects.

The Pinterest Vision Board Desktop Wallpaper tutorials that were FAILED to be delivered on time are rescheduled for a September Launch.

I refer to Noomii, an awesome new gig for Gunsinger Coaching and a chance to build awesome coaching community!

DOWNLOAD your printable copy of the Mini-Project Organizer here.

Looking forward to your comments!

nice ass (kicking)!

kick ass and celebrate

Gunsinger Coaching clients do hard work to get where they want to be. YOU do hard work to shift your life and work in ways that are more in line with who you are and the impact that you want to make.

But I am noticing a distinct lack of celebration out there. Scoffs of “How important is taking time to celebrate what seems like something so insignificant in the grand scheme of things?” and “My little movements don’t deserve celebration.”

Your little movements are EXACTLY what deserve celebration. Because they don’t come easy and they don’t come cheap. And because you will make many more, so fill up your bucket in celebration: however that looks for you!

How will you champion yourself by celebrating the work you do?

go find your people

Earlier this year, I was fortunate enough (through my involvement with Digital Okanagan) to be one of the organizers for the inaugural Startup Weekend Okanagan. Reflecting back, that event is still having major rippling effects on me, my business and my community.

Being in the Okanagan for less than two years, my network had pieces of its web missing and, holy cracker smacks, was I feeling it. I missed my Toronto peeps. I missed my old colleagues. I missed being part of something bigger.

I didn’t realize it, but by committing myself to the Startup Weekend Organizing team, my roots began to grow. Connecting with the vibrant tech community locally and regionally for a weekend dedicated to building cool stuff connected me to my people. MY PEOPLE! My people are smart, creative, passionate, driven, motivated, wild and wonderful. Check out how cool they are!

So, the point I am trying to make is: you need to find your people. The ones that resonate with what you want to do, what you want to build and the impact that you want to make. The ones that are already doing it, are thinking of doing it, and have done it already.

And one way to find your people is to volunteer some of YOUR super-smarts and energy towards a cause, event, or movement. It’s out there already, or you might want to start your own.

But it’s time to leave the building and get out into the world to see what good you can do. The good you are drawn to will also draw your people.

Kick ass.

dreamboards: not just for hippies

Welcome to the first in a series of video tutorials about how to create dreamboards! In this tutorial, we cover what dreamboards are and how to create your own in low tech version: using scissors, glue and old magazines.

In this tutorial I mention:

Using music to set the mood for dreaming! Try out some of my 8tracks favourites.

Jamie Ridler‘s wonderful dreamboarding workshops.

Cheap Ikea frames for dreamboards.

Also: I mention upcoming tutorials on using Pinterest to create vision boards as well as desktop wallpaper!

Happy dreaming!



AND: if you want to double-down on the creative journalling/visioning process, check out the wonderful Lucy Knisley‘s video on how to make graphic travelogues!


timely tools and keepin’ on track

These days, I am wondering who doesn’t have difficulty staying on task, getting things done or feeling like they got enough done (or the right things, or, or, bloody or…). In the words of sweet, dreamy, Ben Harper, “I’d rather find out who you are than who you are not.” Or, in non-musical terms, let’s find out what you aredoing, not what you aren’t.

Because a never-ending to-do list will drive you to the LOL cats.

And paying attention to what you are accomplishing, working on, and getting done (instead of what’s left on the list) will keep you fuelled up.

Here are two cool tools that are so simple, they stick.

  • Week-at-a-Glance printable  via @JournalingMrs simplifies your week into just a couple of boxes. Print out a stack and keep track of your week. After a few weeks, you will have some great data about what you are doing.
What are you doing to stay organized? I would love to hear your dirt-simple tricks that keep you rolling forward!

P.S. I would bet, that even though you may not feel like it, you are doing the best you can.