We’ve all heard similar messages throughout our lives –

Be nice!
Find things in common with people!
They must know, LIKE, and trust you to work with you!

And as a result, many of us developed a need to be liked by others in every area of our life.  In fact, some may even have taken it to the point of not liking ourselves unless other people like us first.

But does your need to be liked help or hurt you in your business?

That depends…

Years ago, when I first started my coaching business (I was a life coach at that time), my pricing was pretty low.  And the amount of value I gave was very high.  I was able to grow my business while using all the lessons of niceness I had learned growing up.

Looking back, I would not be surprised if some of the people who hired me back then were actually paying me to be their friend!

Here’s what I know now that I didn’t know then.

If I want to impact the world in a big way through my business, I must allow my clients to have huge transformations in their lives and businesses.  And the first step in that transformation is them making a significant commitment – both emotionally and financially.

When I realized this and started raising my prices, my need to be liked began to get in the way.  And I learned some important lessons.

Needing to be liked by potential clients can actually hurt your business.  People who hire you need to know you can help them get what they want.  That is totally different than them liking you.  In fact, if they like you too much, they see you as a friend instead of someone who can really help them.  And they don’t pay their friends to help them transform.

Finding commonalities can really hurt your sales.  I see this all the time when I help clients with their sales calls.  And I used to do it myself!  Starting a sales conversation by pointing out everything you and the potential client have in common can be very detrimental.  They aren’t going to pay someone who is “just like them” to help them grow.  Again, you now fall into the friend category, and although they may like and adore you, they will not see you as someone who can really help them.

Needing to be liked will get in the way of true service.  As a rule, your potential client is talking to you because they have been stuck in their story and problem for a long time.  And they have many strategies in place for staying stuck, or they wouldn’t still have their problem.  Your job is to do anything you can to get them to wake up and see what’s really going on.  And you will stop short of doing that if you are more concerned about being liked than truly helping them.

I will never forget the day when my coach asked me – “Are you in business to be appreciated, or to be of true service?”  It was a moment of truth for me, and as I took an honest look at it, I was placing my need for being liked before saying what needed to be said in my conversations with potential clients.

Needing to be liked is more about you than about them.  In order to truly help people, you need to be focused on helping them.  If needing to be liked is on your agenda, you have taken your focus away from them.  And you have put it on helping you feel good about yourself.  And they will feel that – perhaps not consciously, but at the energetic level.  And they will say no to working with you.  And they will not receive the gift that you are here to share with them.

So, it’s time to ask yourself an important question:

Is my need to be liked getting in the way in my business?

And if your answer is yes, what one thing will you do to start changing that today?

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