You train people to think of you in a certain way.
If you are professional and expect to conduct business that way, the people in your life will treat you as a professional.
A local surfer gal came into our studio and bought her first Drew Brophy original titled “Pirate Beach.” She just got her Real Estate license and she was excited to hang the painting in her new office.
I was happily surprised when she said “Your blog posts have really helped me with my new business.”
“Really?” I asked, curious how my art blog could help someone in real estate.
She explained that the post I wrote about charging people for your time encouraged her to maintain professionalism in her own business.
She told me about a friend who asked her to find renters for his $3,800 a week beach house. He said “I’ll pay you $50.00 if you find me a renter.”
The standard charge for an agent to secure a renter is 30%, which covers advertising, footwork and website listing.
She said “I told him I normally charge 30%, but since he’s a friend, I’d lower it to 20%.”
I said that she was off to a great start in her career. She’s setting a precedent that this friend and others after him will come to expect to pay her for her time, and they will respect her as a professional.
My philosopher-artist husband, Drew, always says “you train people how to treat you.”
People come to expect what you will expect, and they will fulfill that expectation. This can work in your favor, or not, depending on how you choose to make your expectations known.
I’ve seen this truth unfold many times. One example is the relationship we have with the company Liquid Force. Drew designed wakeboards for them years ago. After about six years of not working with them, they called asking to commission Drew once again for new designs. We agreed on pricing, and our contact there, Jimmy, said, “I know Drew won’t start until he gets a deposit, so I’ll have accounting cut a check right away.” He’s worked with Drew in the past, and he remembers that Drew expects partial payment before he begins the work.
We’ve trained people to treat us in this way by:
- Being verbally clear of our expectations in the very beginning
- Being consistent in our policies (pricing policies, meeting deadlines, expecting payment on time)
- Valuing our time enough to not allow people to waste it (I charge consulting fees for people wanting to spend hours picking Drew’s brain on the best design ideas)
Word gets around and over time, all of the people in your life will get used to your expectations of how you want to be treated.
They come to expect your expectations, and they fulfill it.