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     Setting Professional Standards And Boundaries

Professional STANDARDS are strong guidelines for how you treat yourself within your business or career. They can include a code of ethics, guarantees, how many hours you work, etc. As the boss, have you set standards for your own company? Professional BOUNDARIES are about how you want your clients to treat you within your business. They can include requesting to be paid on time, honesty, how to cancel appointments, how often they can contact you, etc.

Professional standards and boundaries create a professional ATMOSPHERE around your businesses. As each of us evolve, it is important for us to continually raise our standards and boundaries. Sometimes they help you attract a higher caliber of clients. Other times they reflect that your time and effort are now worth more than they previously were. Whatever REASON you have for creating new standards and boundaries, make sure that you can stand by them, no matter what!

Your new or updated standards and boundaries may -- and will -- annoy people. You may lose clients. Any time you set a new RULE, someone is bound to be annoyed -- they have gorwn accustomed to doing things a certain way, and change is always difficult. But it's no different than starting a new exercise routine and giving up sweets -- you are willing to put up with some discomfort, because you know the change will improve your situation in the long-run. The same is true with setting professional standards and boundaries.

Learning to not take things PERSONALLY maybe difficult, however, it's a very necessary part of evolving. One of the other big lessons of setting boundaries -- whether business or personal -- is that you don't owe anyone an EXPLANATION for the changes you're making. We humans seem to think that when we say "no" we have to explain ourselves. Yet, when we say "yes" we never explain ourselves! When someone asks you why you've made a business change, it's okay to give a simple answer like "it's a business decision" or "it's best for me this way".

Professional standards and boundaries help our businesses most often by adding a new level of consistency and STRUCTURE. Michael Gerber, in his book "The E-Myth Revisited" says, "The business development process is not static. It's not something you do and then are done with. It's something you do all the time." This month, take a look at your professional standards and boundaries and raise them to the next LEVEL.


Maria Marsala is the owner of Maria's Place for Holistic Evolution, a nationally recognized Life and Business Development Coaching and Consulting Company. Maria's Place provides clients -- who are committed to having an impact on the world -- personal and professional services including coaching, consulting, training, seminars, administrative support and computer/web services. Visit website at www.coachmaria.com.

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