I helped a client fire a client this week, it wasn’t the first time, and it won’t be the last!
Knowing when it’s time to fire a client is very important for every business owner, the dead weight can be detrimental to your company. In business every second is worth something, and the last thing you want to do is to waste your time on a challenging client.
Who is The Dead Weight Client?
You know the one, you spend hours of your time discussing their needs, and the solutions that you can offer, but as soon as you mention cost, they suddenly have no time or are full of excuses. It seems like everyday they are experiencing a new tragedy, from the sudden death of the family pet, to a sudden foreclosure.
Don’t fall for the charade!
There is a reason you are getting the run around, simply put, it’s an attempt to corner you into reducing your rates.
In these situations, I respectfully, make it clear that I will not wait forever, and if my client roster fills up before they confirm and finalize the contract I will not be able to work with them.
I don’t chase, and I do not keep reducing my rates.
It took me a long time to get to that point. My wonderful hubby helped me understand the importance of valuing my own time, skills, and everything that my business has to offer to each and every potential client.
If you know that you have a lot to offer, your potential clients will see this, and respect you!
Don’t you just hate a know it all? Well, guess what, if you haven’t already, you will soon run into the know it all client. The one who hires you for your services, obviously, one would think, because they are not able to do it themselves and yet feel as if they should teach you how to do your job. Micromanaging every little detail and disagreeing with all of your suggestions.
It is beyond frustrating, and can negatively impact your business.
I love learning, and continue to study in order to improve professionally and personally on every level. I love working with clients that challenge me, because I can get bored easily, that is precisely why the VA field works so well for me. It’s unpredictable, and allows me to work in a wide range of industries.
However, as a professional I have to know when to remind the client that I am the expert and not the other way around, because the last thing I want is to take bad advice and produce a terrible final service or product. I respectfully help my client understand that he/she hired me because of my expertise, and if they are not okay with that, I prefer to walk away, rather than do something I know will not be done the right way.
The Unavailable Client
I schedule a video conference at least once a week with my clients, and try to keep every channel of communication open at all times. My clients can reach me by Skype, Google Hangouts, Phone, and Email at any time during the day. This is necessary when running a virtual business like mine.
I am a self starter, but I am not a mind reader, there is no such thing in my opinion. In order to anticipate the needs of my client, I have to get to know the client. Understanding how the client thinks, what they value, helps me to anticipate their needs. The problem is, the client has to actually be available for me to do this!
I have always had a hard time hurting peoples feelings, running a business has certainly helped to change me for the better in many areas of my life. There are times when we have to stand our ground, and if you want to have a successful business, you will have to know when it is appropriate to say yes, and when saying ‘NO’ is necessary.
Value yourself, and your time enough to respectfully cut off the “Dead Weight”
Nancy Laws is a virtual assistant specializing in business blog management. Through her virtual business LawsWrites, she offers business support to Start-Ups, Bloggers, and Authors. She has headed business operations, social media marketing, project, and blog management, from her home in OH.
Nancy has loved connecting with other Mompreneurs through her blog Afro-Chic Mompreneur. She launched her blog, after moving from Maryland to Ohio. She needed a way to connect with other working moms, to share tips for staying organized as a woman on the move. A blog that started as a way of reaching out and redefining herself as a business owner, mother, and wife, has turned into the go to guide for the Mompreneur. Connecting moms with brands that help to simplify business, fashion, health, beauty, and parenting, for the mom on the go. Nancy has been featured on several sites and is currently a contributor to Theindiechicks.com.