What size are the firms that you work with?
I have performed most paid services for firms with 1-20 people. My entire coaching and advisory practice is built on knowing the differences between firms of different sizes. If you have only two employees, I can help you at the current stage and tell you what is coming next. If you have 20 people, I know your unique issues too.
Speaking of expectations, can you explain further what mine should be?
My work is not a panacea. What clients appreciate the most, though, is an outside perspective on how they are really doing (without pulling any punches), or how to accomplish something without reinventing the wheel. They realise that change is still dependent on them, but they want to be pointed in the right direction based on what has been successful for other firms. I will never know as much about your firm as you do, but I will likely know more about your firm than any other consultant that you work with.
Sometimes I picture this as you standing in a thick fog, not even knowing all the options, much less which one might make the most sense. Because this is familiar ground, I’ll walk towards you, grab your hand, and safely lead you out into a place where you can see.
What will a typical meeting look like if I choose monthly, fortnightly or bi-monthly coaching?
Each session will deal with either an assessment of your situation, a particular issue you would like to make progress on, or a review of changes you have implemented. I recommend that clients batch questions throughout the month so that we can deal with as many issues as possible within the time allowed.
How long should we expect the process to take?
Long-term results take time and consistent effort every month. My carefully planned process will usually take 12 months for the typical firm to see a significant improvement.
If I sign up as a client and decide that I want more assistance with execution beyond your coaching services, how do we continue to work together?
I offer a short list of optional implementation services to help my clients fill the gaps in their skillset or to save time.
However, I am extremely cautious about ensuring my advice is not conflicted at any point during our working relationship, so I’ll generally refer you to a list of trusted specialists for most tasks.
How can you help me from Melbourne?
Melbourne is my home base, but I have figured out how to work with firms all over the world. My clients hire me because they think I know what I’m doing and not because I’m nearby. I conduct all engagements via Zoom and Google Docs, which helps me to share screens and record calls for future reference.
Can you show me sample recommendations?
If this is important, you may be too skeptical to benefit from a client relationship. I’d recommend that you read everything that interests you here and on my blog to get a feel for how I think and work with clients, and then just go with your gut. I appreciate new clients taking the time to familiarise themselves with my content.
What are your payment and cancellation terms?
As a client, you are reserving a portion of my capacity each month, and you are responsible for it even if you don’t make use of it. Payments for cancelled or postponed sessions do not rollover to future months, and are not refundable.
If you need to reschedule our agreed upon timeslot, I will happily provide you with alternative times for the current month up to 48 hours prior to our scheduled meeting.
If you’re late to your meeting, I will wait for 15 minutes after the start of your scheduled meeting for you to arrive. After that, I am free to leave the meeting. There are no refunds for arriving late nor will I be able to extend your meeting longer than the scheduled time due to other meetings that may be scheduled after yours.
I bill my clients automatically each month via Stripe credit card processing. This billing and cancellation policy is applied uniformly with every client.
I’m not an architect, can we still work together?
No. My expertise is highly specialised and tested for architecture practices. I do not offer speculative marketing advice to brands in other verticals. I will happily refer you to someone else who will be a better fit for your firm.
Who will be working with us?
Dave Sharp does all the work with clients. When you engage me, you’re working with me directly.
What does your monthly coaching fee cover?
The monthly fee described on my homepage covers my time meeting with you each month, the research I conduct prior to that meeting and a portion of the capacity I have available to answer questions via email and think about your firm between our meetings. It also contributes directly to the advanced tools and apps I use to provide you with useful data and insightful analysis during our meetings.
Is there anything we need to prepare before we get started?
No. My process adapts to architecture firms at every stage of the marketing journey. My typical client has very little experience setting up and managing analytics, marketing budgets, CRMs etc when we first start working together. If you’re at a more advanced stage with your marketing, please let me know what data you have available prior to our kick-off meeting and I’ll send a request for access.
My firm has plenty of work, how can you help me?
My process adapts to firms at every stage of the growth journey, whether they’re just getting started, or they’re already the established industry leaders and are looking for new opportunities. I have worked with a number of fast-growing, successful firms who have no trouble getting work. Instead, they seek my advice on a wide range of subjects including: improving client quality, systems and processes, delegation and management, reporting to shareholders & boards, auditing external marketing vendors, personal branding, book launches, public speaking, pro bono & philanthropic initiatives and much more.