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The Art of Client Service by Ian Schafer, Robert Solomon

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Chapter 17Perfect the Perfect Scope of Work

Let's say you followed the advice I offered earlier and succeeded in winning a new client. The best part of winning is just that: winning. The hard part of winning is you now need to do the work that is a consequence of winning.

Assuming this didn't happen during the pitch process, one of the first tasks before you is to formulate a scope of work that articulates what your firm will provide, the time it will take, and the fee you will charge for your services.

Done well, a scope of work inaugurates a relationship in a positive and productive manner, affirming the choice your client made in selecting you, planting the seeds of trust you hope to nurture into a meaningful relationship.

Done poorly, a scope of work inaugurates a relationship in a negative and destructive manner, undermining the choice your client made in selecting you, planting the seeds of distrust you dread will plague you from the start, damaging or possibly even destroying any hope for a relationship based on trust.

One of the by-products of a poorly formulated and executed scope of work is something known as scope creep. What is scope creep, why does it happen, who does it happen to, and what can we do to reduce it?

Scope creep defined. This is going to be a bit longwinded; my apologies, but here's a definition:

You win a new account, or an existing client outlines a new assignment. You respond with a proposal. The client approves. You begin work. And then, mysteriously, ...

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