Today We Fired A Client

By Bill Rusteberg

One of the hardest things a consultant can do is fire a client. Today we did just that. It wasn’t an easy decision. This is a client we’ve served for many years, earning deep friendships within the organization that will endure.

Business relationships must be based on trust, shared philosophies and expectations. Both sides must benefit. These foundational blocks build a three legged stool. A two legged stool never stands.

Below is a short version of my termination notice:

After reassessing our working relationship I find I can no longer be of any further value to you and your team. I owe you an explanation, as there are several contributing factors.

Demonstrated reluctance to consider suggested strategies indicates a growing tendency towards static risk management which is contrary to proper oversight. We bring no value in exchange for the fees you pay us when the status quo isn’t continuously challenged with evolving strategies and a wiliness to act when it’s in the best interests of the plan and plan members no matter how hard change may be.

The value we bring includes years of risk management experience, contacts within our industry built on trust over time as well as our continuous commitment toward means and methods a dynamic and changing market may warrant in order to best serve our customers. Contributing these resources to achieve best results requires a receptive audience sharing the same philosophies and goals. The ability to embrace and adapt to change is key to the process. Otherwise frustration of purpose leads to mediocre results.

Our commitment to close out of business services will leave our client whole and prepared for the future. They are in good stead. We wish them the best.