Oh, My Bad.
Updated: Jul 4, 2018
Y'all/You guys, I had an amazing experience this morning.
A web designer and developer reached out to me via my @teabeapea_creative_services Instagram account to the Contact Us section of teabeapea.com. She'd been following (and enjoying) my IG posts, so when she saw my new website announcement, she took a look.
I regularly receive messages via DM on both LinkedIN and Instagram. And, now I receive messages via my website (yay). However, many of them seem spam-adjacent, and are ignored (boo). But, I read each one -- because a few of those messages have landed real-deal, revenue-generating accounts. And, one even allowed me to talk on a podcast.
So, the web designer and developer that reached out to me yesterday is interested in potential partnerships. I viewed her business site, IG account, and impressive portfolio of work, and then set up an on-camera meeting via Zoom. So there we were this morning, face to face, asking each rapid-fire questions, giving quick, but thoughtful answers.
And, you guys/y'all, there's definitely possibilities for partnership. She is GOOD. She was completely undaunted by my Terri Potterly way of asking questions. She knows her stuff. She's confident. She's very specialized and has clearly created a profitable, niche market that includes monthly recurring revenue. I feel like adding a "Go girl or YASSSS," but let's move away from that.
Our plans are to continue getting to know one another over the next few months. And, this next part is important: I expect to be as convinced of her authenticity in the coming months as I am today.
Here's what sold me. When I asked what questions or feedback she had for me, she did not bat an eye before she talked about my website's user experience (UX) -- or lack thereof. She was honest. She was direct. She was right.
She didn't do any of the, "Don't take this the wrong way," or "Not trying to be ugly," or "I hope you don't get mad," nonsense. The Best Part? She didn't try to sell her services to me (her clients are much bigger and need sites with far more features than my brochure site -- though she can do those, too).
And, while there is more -- so much more to come to teabeapea.com, and plenty of good reason for it to currently be a "whisper of site" my first instinct was not to respond with defensiveness or excuses. My response? Gratitude.
It was so refreshing to meet someone who can so effortlessly provide constructive criticism from a place of logic. Sure, she's happy to explore both partnership and subcontractor agreements. But, she's gonna need me to get my ... site ... together before we move forward -- especially since I am clearly REALLY GOOD at attracting people to me (my website, my social media accounts). She understands that my website has not been a barrier to landing clients. But, she'd have been remiss to not point out a few areas for quick improvement.
I value honesty and I treasure integrity. If someone means well and is truly on my side, she or he might ask some truly difficult questions or point out some truly critical areas for improvement. And, to me, besides beautiful shoes and dresses, there is no greater gift. Well, okay, besides beautiful shoes and dresses ... AND the love from my husband and children and pets, there's no greater gift. Okay. Beautiful shoes and dresses, family love, supportive friends are great gifts, and so is as a person who values honesty and treasures integrity.
Now, if someone is basing a criticism of me or my work on something that is NOT rooted in logic -- that's a different story. For example, I once received criticism on an employee performance review for being difficult to understand (my "tongue was so thick") -- with the requirement that I take a diction course (I swear on my shoe collection this is nothing but the truth). My response was NOT rooted in logic because the criticism was not rooted in logic (or anything remotely approaching the truth). That criticism was stemmed in something much deeper and darker. But that, and many others like it, is a story for another time.
Stay tuned -- for website updates, improved user experience (UX), exciting new partnership announcements, freelance opportunities (for designers, writers, video editors, developers), and, of course, more stories.