Hey there! Welcome back to another episode. I’m so happy you’re here. In today’s episode, we’re talking about the super important topic of boundaries.
I’m not going to lie, I haven’t always been the greatest at setting boundaries in my business. I actually feel like I struggled with this up until I got pregnant with my son in 2019. And now, I have no issues setting boundaries with my clients, team members, and just anyone in general in the business realm.
So let’s talk first about why you need to implement boundaries in your business.
- Because your client’s urgency is not your emergency. (Tasha Booth)
- Because if you don’t, people may take advantage of your kindness and walk all over you
- Because you own your own business and although people are paying you, you aren’t their full-time employee so they shouldn’t be able to dictate your schedule.
What types of boundaries can I set in my business:
- Boundaries around response time
- Boundaries around your communication methods
- Boundaries around your working hours
- Boundaries around “urgent” tasks
- Boundaries around when you need items by in order to complete them in a timely manner
How to Start Setting These Boundaries in your Business
- Put it in your contract – To set these boundaries with your clients from the get-go, I like to include them in my contract. For example, as the owner of a podcast management agency, our client’s podcasts are going through a number of different hands to get to the end result so I set a boundary in my contract around when we need the raw audio in our hands so that it gets published on time and the client has to initial next to the statement so I know that they didn’t overlook it.
I usually will only enforce this boundary if it becomes a chronic thing. If it happens just once or twice, I usually let it slide because I know it’s not their norm. Most of my clients just acknowledge that a week will need to be skipped if they don’t get their audio into us in time. Of course, not all clients will be as understanding, but eventually, you’ll be able to pick out those red flag clients from a mile away.
- Be upfront with your clients about your boundaries – Obviously, it would be a bit overkill to have them initial at every boundary in your contract, but this still needs to be communicated to your clients in some way.
The way I like to do this is by sending a welcome packet to my client automatically after the contract is signed and the invoice is paid.
Now, of course, there’s a chance that they may not read your welcome packet but what can you do? At least you put those boundaries out there.
- Don’t allow your client to break your boundary – If you notice a client starting to overstep, course-correct before it begins to happen. For example, I have a client who will sometimes Slack or email me on the weekends but instead of responding to them right then and there, I wait until Monday to hit them with a response. With this, then my client begins to realize they shouldn’t expect a response from me on weekends and most stop emailing then because 99% of the time, their email isn’t an emergency.
Pro tip: Turn off your notifications for your email on weekends. This will keep you from getting notifications about emails you’re receiving so you’ll be able to relax and enjoy your weekend because to me, there’s nothing worse than getting an unfortunate email over the weekend and then having it ruin your entire day or even your entire weekend because you’re worried about it.
Now let’s chat, have you struggled with setting boundaries with your clients? What has worked for you? I’d love to hear from you. Hit me up on Instagram at jenny.suneson or join the Profitable Podcast Manager Society FB group and let us know there.