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Another knock, I open the door, and again I'm surrounded by monsters who come up to my knees. "Trick or treat!" In the US, October 31 is Halloween, when it's a tradition for parents to take their children knocking on neighbors' doors, to get their bags filled with goodies.
It's too much fun. There's no chance these kids are going to no-show for  dre dre their appointment with the neighborhood.
Except that there some houses kids just avoid. Just like some of your clients cancel or no-show on you.
Those skipped houses have candy for the kids. You have better than candy for your clients. Why do some kids skip certain houses and some clients skip appointments?
Don't they know how painful it is to be all ready, and have no one show up?
Why a kid would no-show and miss the candy. There was one house in my neighborhood when I was growing up that really did it up for Halloween. Their front yard looked like a grave yard, and the front hallway was filled with dry ice smoke, with a wicked looking witch stirring a huge cauldron waving her pointed fingers for us to come in.
Every year when I was little, I told myself I was going to go up to that house. And every year, when the time came, I never did. It was years before I felt brave enough to face the witch.
You are that witch with the cauldron. Yes, your clients are adults, and yes, they really *should* call in advance to cancel. But, it's hard. Your client made the appointment because they want help, so they aren't really wanting to cancel.
But, when the time comes, they just don't want to go up to the witch with the cauldron. You know you aren't going to eat them, but for them, they're wondering... and because they're adults, they aren't allowed to say 'I'm scared.' Instead, they're 'Too busy.' Or 'Don't have the money.' Or they 'forgot.'
Should you charge them double for pain and suffering? I don't know if Halloween trick-or-treating was something you did growing up, but think about it from the kid's perspective. You're young. You're small. You're dressed in a funny costume. And you're about to knock on an adult's door, someone you might not know at all.
For adults, it's a fun holiday. But for very young children, Halloween can sometimes be a little too real, if an adult doesn't make the effort to make it really clear.
Older, more experienced kids love witches with realistic cauldrons. Young kids don't.
You can avoid cancellations, but not after the fact. Managing cancellations after the fact is so painful to your heart, because almost anything you do is going to feel like punishment to them and to you. And punishment isn't really how you want to run your business, is it?
The truth is, cancellations either happen or don't at the time the appointment is made. So, that's the best time to handle it. And not with strict policies, because that's not what your clients really need.
What they need is to have clear expectations. If you make it clear that the smoke is just dry ice, and that the witch is just a costume, and that there is actually plenty of candy for them, then their fears won't get the better of them.
Are there specific ways to set their expectations, so you don't have cancellations? Yes, as a matter of fact, there are. Just come up to my door, and I'll tell you about them. And I promise I won't boil you in my cauldron.
Keys to Canceling Cancellations.
' Looking through the appointment.
When a client makes an appointment, can they see what comes after? If you take time to explain what kind of benefits and experiences they will have after the appointment is over, then they have something to look forward to, beyond just the experience.
It may seem obvious, but it can be easy to get carried away talking about the work you do, and forget to emphasize how rested and relaxed they'll feel after the treatment you give, for instance.
' Show them the dry ice machine.
The witch in my old neighborhood probably had a lot of fun with the dry ice machine, and perhaps forgot that as a little kid, I had no idea what a dry ice machine is and what it does.
For your clients, explain to them what they can expect, and why. What happens during the appointment? What do they need to do to prepare? Ask, and ask again, if there is anything that  beats by dre solo review they are unsure about, or that they are nervous about. Do your best to empathize with their fears, and soothe them.
' Let 'em go, and learn from 'em.
Despite your best intentions, some people cancel. That's okay. Don't chase them down, or fret about it. If you've put in a good effort to be transparent and safe with them, and they still don't show, then chalk it up to experience.
However, think back over your interactions. Did you have any niggling thoughts early on  monster beats by dr. dre studio that they might not be  beats by dre pro for sale a perfect client, or that they might not be 100% committed? When you are wanting appointments, it's easy to run roughshod over your own intuition.
Make a mental note of any signs you picked up, and add them to your experience, so that you don't ignore them next time. Sometimes clients say "Yes" when they really aren't ready. Your job isn't to force them  beats by dr dre monster studio into an appointment, but to see what they need to be ready.
Every business has some cancellations and no-shows. But, you can keep these to a minimum by coming out from behind the cauldron, and making things as clear and transparent as possible to your potential clients.
It will be a lot more fun when they actually show up for the candy, and you get to work with them.
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Mark Silver is  beats by dre pro real the author of Unveiling the Heart of Your Business: How Money, Marketing and Sales can Deepen Your Heart, Heal the World, and Still Add to Your Bottom Line. He has helped hundreds of small business owners around the globe succeed in business without lousing their hearts. Get three free chapters of the book online: www.heartofbusiness.com
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