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How to Choose Service Professionals for Your Business (Part 1)

Interviewing and choosing service professionals (lawyers, bookkeepers, etc.) for your business isn’t always easy. How do you know if they’re any good? For starters, don’t look at the way they’re dressed.

By
Stever Robbins,
February 18, 2013
Episode #255

Page 3 of 3

Beware professionals who don’t know when they’re out of their depth!

Whether the doctor approved or disapproved of the treatment wasn’t the issue. The issue is that they were willing to render an opinion with no knowledge whatsoever. That means when they’re out of their depth, they won’t know it. (The research, by the way, showed that the treatment in question works and is now considered quite legitimate.)

In my life, I’ve been burned by this several times. Here’s a list of oversteps I’ve seen in my career, each of which led to pretty disastrous consequences:

  • Lawyers adding their business judgment into proceedings.

  • Businesspeople adding their legal judgment into proceedings.

  • Venture capitalists who think they know how business works.

  • Bookkeepers having opinions on tax law. (CPAs are trained in tax law, not bookkeepers.)

  • Programmers deciding marketing strategy.

(As I write this list, I’m crying, thinking of how wonderful my life could have been if I hadn’t listened to these so-called professionals. Sniff, sniff…)

Some people truly do have competence in multiple areas. Your open-ended questions will bring that to the fore. But when you hear someone rendering opinions outside their area of expertise well, trust but verify.

Bernice is all excited to go interview her new estate planner, bookkeeper, and lawyer. She knows not to trust suits unless they’re backed by competence. She’s going to make sure all her candidates demonstrate real knowledge of their content, and that they also demonstrate knowledge of their limits.

But there’s more! It’s not enough to hire competent people. You also need to hire competent people you can work with. In the next episode of this series, we’ll continue choosing who to work with and dive into the emotional realms. Emotion. Oh, boy. I just l-o-v-e emotion!

This is Stever Robbins. Email questions to getitdone@quickanddirtytips.com. I work with entrepreneurs to stay on top of growth and find new revenue opportunities. If you want to know more, visit http://www.SteverRobbins.com.

Work Less, Do More, and have a Great Life!

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