Do customers/clients think you’re a chicken or a pig?

When Steve Nock was president of Inclinator Company of America, I loved going to meet with him. Besides valuing them as a client, I used to leave there with some of the best business analogies. (He retired. We still call Inclinator a client.) One was too good to ever be forgotten. As we were discussing their plans for launching a new product and the likely need to overhaul its marketing program and explore new distribution channels, I did what every good marketing firm Client Manager would do … I said, “You know you can count on us to help this be successful.”

I didn’t immediately grasp the apparent absurdity of that statement, but thank you Steve for not pointing it out. Instead, he decided to have a little fun and asked me if I was going to be a chicken or pig during this pivotal time for their company. After a few awkward moments, he sensed I never heard that question before and let me off the hook. He said, “Chickens are involved, but pigs are committed.” Again, a few awkward moments … then I got it.

Of course I want to be known as a pig to my clients. (Did I really just write that?) Truth be told, I am committed. But I can’t be as fully committed as the client. Can a pig be just a little committed? Ok, I’m a chicken! But a really, really committed one.