Last week we talked about toxic clients you need to watch out for. If you haven’t read that post so far, you can find it here. So let’s continue with three more toxic clients you need to watch out for!
The Entitled Client
These clients act like they’re renting your entire self out to them and that they’re entitled to you. They often make a demand and insist it gets done immediately as if you have nothing else to do and can stop everything because this client is paying you.
They may demand you answer the phone whenever they call, even if it’s 7:30 AM on a Saturday. They may ask for something outside of your comfort zone or expect extra favors, as if paying you any money at all means you should be so grateful that you stop everything that you do and help them with something mundane. As if you don’t have other clients.
How to Fix This
Be very clear about your terms and conditions and stick to them! Make sure they understand what this signed up for, and more importantly, what they didn’t. Also, set up business hours and never work outside of those hours.
The Disorganized Client
This one’s pretty common. This client is drowning in responsibilities and does not delegate tasks. They’re usually focused enough on keeping control that they never learn how management is all about effective delegating. They talk about not having enough time, fail to send out information, or bail on assignments altogether.
How to Fix This
Accept that you’re probably going to be the one making a lot of decisions. These clients obviously lack proper organization skills so see if you can pull out any information you will need ahead of time and organize those yourself. Ask yourself if it’s worth babysitting this client and don’t be afraid to pass.
The Boss Client
Any client should know that a hired service is very different from an employee. This one does not. This client will ignore your recommendations, insist you do things their way, and will make you redo your good work over and over again over details that are basically pointless.
This client is similar to the entitled client (and you can assume we’re talking about an entitled, bossy boss). They may call you at literally any time, they won’t respect your business hours or policies but insist you respect theirs.
How to Fix This
Again, have dedicated business hours and absolutely do not waver. The same goes for your terms and conditions. These should be consistent across all clients and never do special favors. The kinds of clients that ask for these favors are rarely ever the ones who will appreciate them.
Of course, there are more, the unreasonable client, the indecisive one. Some who care only about how much they pay you and not the quality of your work, etc. There are too many to list here, but there is an opportunity for your to learn more!
I will be presenting a workshop on this topic on January 16 at the NOVA Society Woman’s CPA, Identifying Toxic Clients and Knowing When to Fire Them. If you’re a member, I would love to see you there. You need to fire the bad clients in order to function properly as a business.