One of the first things people are taught when entering the business world is that the customer is always right. But this is definitely not true. In fact, there are some situations in which you should feel completely comfortable saying “no” to your clients.
Here are some situations that may call for a “no” answer:
• The client is a jerk. Life is far too short to have to worry about doing work for people that you can’t stand. Difficult clients are extremely common, but there
are some that cross the line and become impossible to work with. In these situations, it’s best to cut ties altogether rather than driving yourself crazy trying to please them. Most importantly, if you cut the time commitment to the unreasonable, gave that added time to your best customers – your profit would skyrocket.
• You will not be able to perform high quality work within the time constraints. If you think that your clients have set an unrealistic deadline, it’s better to tell them straight up that you cannot meet the deadline than to try to rush your work and risk having it not meet your standards of quality. If the client is worth working with again in the future, they will respect that you do not want to compromise the quality of your work.
• They take up too much time. Sometimes this is a problem that doesn’t present itself until after you have been working with them for a while. If the client is requiring significantly more attention than you had expected, then it may be time to put an end to your working relationship. You can’t let a single client take up too much precious time that can be used to do work with your other clients.
• They want you to do something ethically wrong. This one should be a no-brainer. If you have a client come to you with a request to do something that is either illegal or violates the ethics and values of your business, then you should not feel at all guilty about turning them down.
• They are trying to lowball you. There are some types of clients that are always looking for a deal, and will lowball your prices no matter what. At some point, you have to know when to stop the negotiations and know that it isn’t worth doing high-quality work for a fraction of the price you’d typically charge.
Can you think of any other situations in which it’s a good idea to say “no” to a client?