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Building Relationships- A Black Swan POV

Guest Blogger:   Our special guest contributor this month is Melissa Michalski, co-owner of CertPro Accounting Team, a proud member of IPBC, a Certified Professional Bookkeeper and a graduate of the Black Swan Project.

As some of you may know, over one year ago our company started our journey with IPBC (Institute of Professional Bookkeepers of Canada) as one of the selected members of the prestigious Black Swan Group.  We were led by the genius Ron Baker and learned to drop the timesheet and hourly billing and proceed with value pricing.  This experience has been hard work but in the end nothing but rewarding.  Telpay has been a huge support system for us throughout the Black Swan process and we are thankful for the opportunity to build such an amazing relationship with them.

melissaThis past January I was lucky enough to attend The Black Swan Summit in Napa Valley.  This is where current Swans and past Swans were able to meet and collaborate along with Ron and three of his fellow colleagues that follow the Value Pricing model.  Let me tell you… I LOVE NAPA VALLEY, but I also love this Summit. I came home refreshed, re-energized and full of ideas on how to make my business even stronger.

The 2015 Summit led me to think differently about our company.  Yes, I always look for ideas and improvements on how to price our customers but, this year many of the speakers spoke a lot about RELATIONSHIP which naturally made me reflect on the importance of my businesses relationships.  Think about this word and what it means in your life, personally and through work.

My goal over the next year is to continue learning and improving on value pricing but to focus more on my relationships; relationships inside our company with suppliers (such as Telpay), accountants and our customers.  The Napa Summit has made me view my business relationships differently, which I’ll be sharing the over a series of blog posts.

In this blog post, I’m going to focus on my relationship with one of my business’s suppliers, Telpay.

I am lucky to have the Telpay office located in my city, Winnipeg. This has allowed me to be able to build a relationship with many of the individuals who work there on a business and personal level.  Our company started using Telpay years ago (we all know how great it is so I do not need to go into that).   As we started our journey with the Black Swan Project, we realized  our goal was to work smarter not harder. Telpay quickly became a tool of paramount importance in achieving this goal and as a result it made my business relationship with them stronger.  We realized how much we enjoyed using their product and how it allowed us to become experts when using it. We converted all payroll customers to Telpay’s direct deposit platform, which allowed them to save money and streamline our process. Through this, it strengthened our relationship with Telpay and our customers.  It made life much easier for us.

Over the past few months, I’ve been finding ways to further develop my relationship with Telpay.  For example, I ask them to speak at our monthly meetings for IPBC, and in return, I support events hosted by Telpay.  To me they are more than a supplier – they help make my business operate. They allow me to function the best way I can and help find ways to make my job easier.  I’m able to convey to my customers that Telpay is the way to go; not only because of their wonderful product but also because of the mutual trust and respect that has been built over time. Because of my trust with Telpay my customers can trust me and we have a stronger relationship.

Think about all the things in your business that help it operate (computers, software, supplies, etc.).   I dare you to look into relationships; find the ones that are going smoothly, others that may need fixing, and those that need to be let go.  This is only going to help your business operate in a more seamless manner.

Don’t forget to read my upcoming blog  where I will look into the relationships within my company.