Masooma Memon
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It is ugly. It slips through the cracks and tries to take permanent root in your mind. Cut off its head, and two more shall take its place. What is it called?

It’s not a mythical creature for sure, but a close relative: imposter syndrome. It’s possible that you aren’t familiar with the term, but you may have experienced it at least once in your life. A 2011 study confirms that about 70% of the people experience at least one episode of imposter syndrome in their lifetime. To clarify, it’s that nagging feeling in your mind that whispers, “you aren’t doing good enough,” or “this is nothing exceptional.”

Naturally, this makes it hard to estimate your work’s quality, leading you to believe that you are not delivering enough. Here are seven ways that help you determine if your clients, partners, and bosses appreciate your work even if it doesn’t satisfy you:

1. They work long-term with you.

A friendly conversation over requirements and deadlines, an interesting project, an appreciative remark, and full stop. That’s how most work unfolds. Normally. However, the mark hits the bulls-eye when the start and end of the project is met with more work. It’s kind of like customers placing more orders with you when they are satisfied with the quality of your product. That’s when you know that others are genuinely impressed. 

2. They are happy to refer your services to others.

Call it referrals, word-of-mouth marketing, passing on word, or whatever you prefer. They are all just different variations of a basic concept: they liked your work, so they recommended you to others. Think of it like getting a haircut that you liked and telling others about it after a Sunday brunch, “get it done. She’s excellent.” Decision maker impressed? Check!

3. They look forward to your opinions.

There are two common traits that you can pick up among people who are typically happy with the work — a change in the way they talk and a welcoming of opinions. The decision maker's emphasis shifts from ‘I’ to ‘we.’ What’s more, they frequently ask for your suggestions and look forward to what you have to say. 

4. You’re their, “hello, 911?”

Wouldn’t you call Dominos if Pizza XYZ burned your crust? You would. Why? Because you trust Dominos for not making the same mistake. The same applies to your work. In times of urgency or a project gone wrong, decision-makers often head to the person they trust. 

5. They are willing to write a testimonial or recommendation.

A decision-maker or client who is satisfied will always be happy to write a testimonial or recommendation for you. There is an exception here, though: some people tend to be busy, so they may never get back to your testimonial request. However, if your request for a testimonial or recommendation gets a thumbs-up followed by a sweet note that says they like your work, you can end up ticking the 'impressed' box.

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