It’s time to let your client go

14 March, 2013

It’s time to let your client go

There are clients who make our freelancing lives difficult and endangering our freelance business. The reasons for which can vary from freelancer to freelancer and situation to situation.

In every situation, there are a few signs that tell you it’s time to let your client go. Get ready to walk away if your client:

-Doesn’t Pay On Time

Late payments are fine once or twice. Clients have issues and glitches too. We understand this and if they let us know in time, we usually don’t mind. But if a client makes a habit out of it then maybe it’s time to move on.

 In cases where you can’t let the client go: politely let your client know you cannot invest your time and efforts in any of their work anymore to give priority to other clients.

- Becomes Increasingly Demanding

Demanding clients can be good – if they force you to produce your best work. But if all the demands are about unreasonable deadlines, changes they’d like you to make after you’ve met every specification or scope creep, it might be time to let the client go.

-Is Disrespectful

As freelancers, we’re willing to put up with a lot. But if there’s one thing a freelancer should never put up with is disrespect. Not only does it blow a mental fuse, you lose all respect for the client. When letting a disrespectful client go, refrain from starting a flame war. Act professionally, cite personal/professional differences and just walk out.

In cases where you can’t let the client go: make it a point that they are being disrespectful and you will not put up with it.

-Believes in “I always win, you always lose”

Success and failure should be a shared experience between client and agency. When the agency scores a major victory, it should be celebrated as a team effort. And, when something goes awry, there shouldn’t be any finger-pointing on either side. You can fire a client who continually merchandises your successes as his personal achievements or always the first to point the finger at us if something didn’t happen as planned.

Firing a client may mean a short-term hit to the organization’s profits, but it’s critical for the long-term emotional health of the organization.
Tell us, what should we add to this list?