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Dealing With Headache Clients

People will sometimes say to me: “I wish I could be picky with my clients like you are. I can’t wait until I get to that point.”

My response is usually the same…

That time doesn’t just come one day – you have to make it happen.

It’s not like you come into work one day and those pain-in-the-butt customers evaporated off of your to-do list.

Being booked with headache customers ties up your workload and drains the fun from your work – and the cycle isn’t going to break itself.

In order to get rid of headache customers you’re going to have to make a choice.

A choice to play by your rules.

And only work with people who play by your rules.

I’ve found that headache clients have the following traits:

  • Trait 1: They think they own you – Bad clients think that since they’re paying you money you have to do everything they say. This isn’t Burger King the customer isn’t always right.
  • Trait 2: They don’t listen – A good client hires you for your expertise, a bad client doesn’t realize this and thinks they know more than you about things in your field.
  • Trait 3: They don’t follow your process – I’ve written before about how important it is to have processes, clients need to follow your formal processes.
man with headache

You can probably intuitively point out problem customers when you first start to talk with them.

Saying “No” to these customers is a choice you have to make in order to have less headaches in the future.

Running a business is quite enjoyable when you pick and choose what people you work with.

Do you say “No” to problem clients? If not, what’s stopping you?

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