We have thousands of visitors to Ivy Coach’s website every day. Some are loyal readers of our college admissions blog. Some are clients, past and present whom we’ve gotten to know through the years. Some are prospective clients. Some like to come for free information (but if they’re loyal readers of our blog, they know that we keep our best secrets off the pages of our website…it’s our secret sauce). And, to paraphrase from a Dartmouth commencement address by comedian Conan O’Brien, when referencing how old people sometimes just come to commencement ceremonies, some just come because they’re interested in college admissions. Even if their child graduated from high school twenty-five years ago. You’d be surprised! It happens. Believe us.
And lots of folks click on our orange button and fill out our free consult form every day to arrange for a time in which we can discuss our service offerings at Ivy Coach. This is the method through which prospective Ivy Coach clients become our clients. Some prospective clients call, but we typically don’t pick up (who wants to have their brains picked about college admissions all day long or listen to boasts about how great their child is all day long? Not us!). And some send us boxfuls of childhood photos. We even once received a lock of hair. Weird!
But, by and large, most of the folks we speak to during our free consultations understand from our email they receive upon filling out our form that the free consult is only to discuss our service offerings, not to offer specific advice about their child. That’s a paid service. Hello, Ivy Coach is a business! And most are entirely pleasant, super nice people. The free consult is as much for us to gauge if we want to work with parents and students as it is for them to gauge if they want to work with us (many folks don’t seem to realize this). But every now and then we get a crazy. Someone who knows it all (so why are they coming to us if they think such?). Someone who is entitled and is only contacting us because they want to cover all the bases (if only they knew how many mistakes their child was making!).
We recently had a caller who said “What else you got?” after she rejected a piece of advice we offered. The caller then followed up by asking, “So how are you going to woo me as a client?” Our response? “We’re not. We don’t have to woo. We’re not interested in working with you. Good day.” Life’s too short. We only like to work with nice people. It’s a company policy and it has been for a quarter century. Oh, and another recent caller apparently sent her child’s resume in advance of the call. It’s a consult to discuss our service offerings. We’re not reviewing documents. That’s part of the paid one hour evaluation. And we’re quite clear about this in our email response. When she wasn’t happy that we weren’t offering her advice, she subsequently threatened to tell all of her friends (Bueller?) about us (we love when people talk about us!) and let us know that once we open her daughter’s resume we will regret not working with her amazing child. On what planet did she think we would waste the time to open her daughter’s resume after the free consult? Not on this one.
So to all the nice, normal folks who fill out our form as prospective clients, we welcome you with open arms. You pass through our filter, which is quite effective. And to the crazies out there, there are thousands of less well known, less effective private college counseling firms across America and we’re certain some — though not all — will try to woo you. Actually, maybe not. But try?