It happens from time to time that as an Angel Business Consultant to savvy female entrepreneurs I open my much cherished Rolodex to make an introduction to third party providers. In my practice, I focus on my area of expertise in sales and marketing but bring on other professionals for services such as HR Consulting, Finance or IT. In order to provide a fully supportive environment for existing clients, these providers are offered the opportunity to complement and work within a strategic framework whilst assisting to stabilize and grow an existing business venture.
For me as the main supporter and long term partner to my clients, making those connections is huge. A lot of trust and preconceived expectations precede the first introduction. Like any other business, my clients are much cherished and carefully looked after. Therefore placing them in front of another provider, the expectation of professionalism, top service and ongoing communication should be very basic requirements. Well and of course, a thank you is always kindly received and the reciprocal notion of offering something in return even more so.
One of my longest standing clients who have enjoyed a very rapid growth phase, needed financial control services and assistance with budgeting strategy. When your business grows at such a speed, getting the right professional assistance is most important and whilst we recognized this need, I introduced a person who I thought would fit the bill.
In the beginning it was agreed that the provider would get caught up on the financial details and make up of the business before any analysis and planning could be done. However after three months we still did not have the necessary financial information, essential for the strategic planning for the next quarter. When connecting with the service provider, there was reluctance and defiance with no intention of putting things right.
I was shocked! How could this be happening? Maybe I needed to properly intervene to get the promised results that had already loyally been paid for by my client? I decided to put in a firm but nice phone call to get to the bottom of it. Instead of an explanation or a desire to put things right, the provider refused point blank to assist or cooperate. They deflected all responsibility, had cashed in the $4,500 and failed to provide the service they had agreed to deliver.
Now what? I felt guilty for having made the intro in the first place and this third party provider let my client down and me as an alliance partner. What do I do?
Do I contact BBB to advise them of the situation?
Do I encourage my client to take legal action against this provider?
Do I stop making future introductions?
Do I from now on have to manage the relationships with third party providers?
Do I need to adjust my expectations?
I am at a loss and need your objectivity! What are your thoughts? Email me firstname.lastname@example.org. You may even have a similar story to share. Either way I would love to hear from you.
Connect and share,
Thank you in advance.