If a client is no longer profitable, he’s not a client

We want our clients to be happy, and we do everything in our power to make that happen. But sometimes they go too far, sometimes they want so much that working with them is no longer profitable.

In one of my earlier posts, I explained how I filter my clients and grade them to instantly know what type of service to give them.  By that I mean, that if a client is not profitable I’m not going to go the extra mile for him. Sometimes that means I will simply not work with him at all.

I would advise, to set up parameters for clients, signals to show them where they stand at every moment.  Remember they are the client so be gentle with them.  If a client crosses the line let him know that you’re not happy with what he’s doing but don’t be rude.

The point where a client stop being profitable is way before the way before the point you’re losing money. It’s also way before the point you’re breaking even. Your business is your main income (in most cases),  therefore for not making sufficient profit from the client is Unacceptable.

When you fire a client, don’t say I don’t want to work with you.  Simply State that the business has changed it’s model.  Different payment methods or wherever it is the client has crossed the line. Tell him you understand if this doesn’t fit his needs allow him to understand he’s free to go find another business that will help him.

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If you don’t have haters your doing something wrong

I heard a story once about a quarterly meeting of one of the biggest companies in the world. The CEO was so proud, he was able to bring sales up and he had no returns what so ever. Sound good right? I mean who wouldn’t like to have no refunds or returns?

Turns out the board members didn’t like that, They fired the CEO. Shocked and confused he asked them why they fired him. Their response was that he didn’t take any risks. Risks will bring refunds and bouncing checks. But they also bring more business. At the end of the day, not taking chances will dramatically reduce your profits.

Recently I released a post titled “never eat when you’re hungry“. The first response I got was haters on reddit telling me this was the worst post I ever wrote. I know I’m not perfect and that some of my ideas are hard to grasp. You know what? that post got more traffic than the rest of my site combined for that month.

Never be afraid to say what you have to say. Never be afraid to take risks. If you’re acting out of fear you’re severely limiting yourself.

There’s no such thing as a done deal

A common mistake people make is that they think that getting something means they will have it forever. Even if they don’t take care of it. Your car won’t survive it, your marriage won’t survive it, so why do you think you customers will?

Getting a new customer costs you a lot of money, time and effort. And giving good service is awesome but it’s not enough. You have to give your customer a reason to come back. Shay Carl said one on the Tim Ferriss show, that you have to keep up the courtship long after you get married. You do so much for your girl, you take her out, buy her flowers. All that work so she will have sex with you, why stop after you get married?

Start having special promotions for your returning customers. It could be special products or sales for customers who have been with you for a certain amount of time or that spend a certain amount on your services annually. If new people like to join in they can become customers too, they will get something similar but get them used to the fact that you value you returning customers. Soon they will become returning customers too.

Advice and what to do with it

Sometimes people may give you unwanted advice, advice you didn’t ask for and frankly sounds like they’re not respecting you. Alternatively, sometimes you ask for advice. Usually from people you perceive is higher status in your chosen to field.

Bruce Lee used to say, that you have to be an empty glass to learn something new otherwise you would overflow. When asking for advice we bring up our experience, trying to poke holes in the idea and prove it’s not going to work. Then what’s the point of asking for advice.

When a person takes the time to share his experience with you, it’s not considered rude or just plain stupid to argue with what he has to say. I’m not saying anything you’re told is right, the person could be wrong. The advice he is giving you could be outdated. But the least you can do for yourself if not for the other person is listen to what he has to say.

Another tip I can give you is, instead of looking for where he’s wrong,  try looking for where he might be right.

Take your ego out of the equation

When you’ve been doing something for a few years. You’ve developed and identity around it, as if it was part of you. Learning  that there’s something that could have been done differently even though is basically just constructive criticism.  Might appear an attack on that identity. The problem here is your ego.

Did you ever notice the beginners Are often able to  find Solutions for things the professionals haven’t been able to find for years? The reason for that is they don’t know all the things that aren’t going to work. They’re just trying it for the first time, and as beginners their ego is not at stake.

Next time you’re facing a difficult issue. Try to forget all the things you know aren’t going to work and attack the issue as if you’re doing it for the first time. Allow yourself to make mistakes, your ego might get bruised but so what. The important thing is you get the job done.