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Business Unplugged™
This blog features Carol Roth's tough love on business and entrepreneurship, as well as insights from Carol's community of contributors.

Landing the Whale Can Sink the Boat

Written By: Catherine Morgan | Comments Off on Landing the Whale Can Sink the Boat

In “The Big Problems Big Clients Can Create for Small Businesses,” Carol’s recent post on Bank of America’s Small Business Community, she shares some important considerations for small business owners working with enterprise clients.

Don’t get me wrong, it can be great over the long term, but in the near term, you may be floating that receivable for a looonnnggg time. Carol begins:

When you are a small company, signing a big, name-brand company may be a dream come true. Not only do big companies have bigger budgets than their smaller counterparts, but they add tremendous credibility and appeal to a small business’s client roster, potentially leading to more business.

However, this entrepreneurial dream can turn into a nightmare for businesses who aren’t well-versed in the work process of bigger corporations. Here are some of the issues to be prepared for before you solicit and agree to work with a big corporate client.

Lengthy and Detailed Vetting and Sell-cycle

First, it can take a long time to get through a big company’s approval process. There are many managers who may require approval, budget cycles to align with and more.

And just when you think you are finished, you’ve only just begun!

Second, major corporations are quite careful about protecting their reputations, so many have a thorough vetting process for each vendor to ensure they are not associated with any business that could become a public relations problem for them down the road.

Be prepared for a vetting that seems like a cross between the Spanish Inquisition and a TSA extended pat-down. This may include giving up sensitive information about your best clients, your revenue, how much your top clients account for in terms of revenue and even background on the executives.

You can read the rest of the post here.

Article written by
Catherine Morgan is the founder of Point A to Point B Transitions Inc., a virtual provider of coaching services to individuals who are in business or career transition. She specializes in helping entrepreneurs transition to corporate jobs they love. Catherine is the author of the eBook Re-Launch You: Discovering Your Point B and Embracing Possibility. An experienced independent consultant who was employed by three of the former Big Five consulting firms, Catherine speaks frequently on topics related to career transition, small business, productivity, and mental health. She doesn’t take herself seriously, but takes her subject matter very seriously.