Nothing is more gratifying than when a referral goes perfect, no matter which end of the referral you are on. However, nothing is more frustrating to me than when a referral goes wrong, again, no matter which side of the referral I am on. I recently referred the same client to two different companies. While both did hit some road blocks along the way one succeeded and one failed in my eyes. I can't blame everything on the service providers. The client in question is maybe not the most business savvy group that you have ever met. However, when I send you a referral I expect the world out of you. I expect you to adjust or to refuse the business because it is not a good fit. Here is my story of a business referral gone wrong and done right.
Without disclosing too much information here is what I can tell you. A client asks me if I know someone that does so and so? I say yes I do and they have always done good work would you like me to introduce you to them? The client replies yes so I introduce them. It seems like a great fit. The client and service provider come to terms for the delivery of service. The service provider informs us all of the expected delivery of service, everyone is happy.
Weeks go by and service is still not provided per terms discussed. I have to step back into the situation and follow through with everyone. The service provider is unresponsive and I have to create the communication between the client and service provider that I referred. To this date neither the client nor I are fully happy that the service has been carried out per terms.
Why am I upset? It comes down to basically one thing; communication. If the service was going to be delayed for some reason no big deal; just communicate with myself and the client. Is anyone going to care if things are delayed as long as you have a valid reason? Absolutely not. Additionally when I give a referral I expect things to be handled. I do not expect to have to step in as a liaison between the service provider and the client. Epic fail of a referral, I will not make the same mistake again.