Not all business is good business. I learned that early on when I first started my freelance writing business in 2010. And it’s a piece of advice I give to every new freelancer who asks me for tips that might help them survive and thrive as a solopreneur.
Although turning away revenue isn’t typically an attractive option, for a variety of reasons, accepting work from a new client or continuing to work with an existing client may not be worth your while. Sometimes, earning a buck can cost you more time than you bargained for, frustrate you, and rob you of your mojo.
As an example:
Several years ago, I said “no” to a prospect who offered an ongoing writing/editing assignment for a print publication that would have given me a steady and perfectly respectable stream revenue indefinitely. During the contract discussion process, she was calling me multiple times every day to chitchat. And when I’d ask specific questions related to our prospective business relationship, she wouldn’t provide firm answers. Quickly, I realized she would completely deplete my energy and patience. Thanks, but no thanks.
And I’ve turned work away from other prospects and clients, as well, when I’ve seen signs of trouble and felt uneasy about going down the path of no return.
7 Reasons You Might Consider Kicking A Client (Or Prospect) To The Curb
If you have a prospective client or existing customer who exhibits any of following characteristics/qualities, you may want to second guess accepting work from them:
- Always springs assignments on you at the very last minute.
- Never knows what they want and then reprimands you for not being on target with what you deliver.
- Tries to nickel and dime you.
- Never pays on time and only pays after you’ve sent numerous payment due reminders.
- Is so needy and demanding that they distract you from giving proper time and focus to clients who do value and respect you.
- Calls or texts you at all hours of the day/night, expecting you to drop whatever you’re doing to tend to their needs.
- Working with them drains you emotionally.
Sometimes it’s easier than others to recognize if you’re better off parting ways. Sometimes the signs are subtle and you need to go with your gut (which will become more intuitive with experience). But always pay attention to what will be in the best interest of you and your business.
Your turn! Have you ever kicked a client to the curb? What qualities or habits are deal breakers for you?
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