6 Good Reasons to Fire a Client

6 Good Reasons to Fire a Client

Businesses rely on cooperation with their clients to achieve success. Having a relationship based on mutual respect creates a successful partnership. But sometimes, despite your best efforts, a client behaves in a clearly unreasonable manner that demands you cut ties. Of course, attempting to resolve the conflict should be the first step. However, if that’s not possible, it’s often necessary to let a client go before they damage your reputation and self-confidence.

Here are some perfectly valid reasons to fire a client in the best interests of both parties.

1.Unreasonable Demands

Your business needs to operate with realistic expectations of what is and isn’t possible. That’s not to say you don’t strive to innovate and push boundaries. But rather that you appreciate current limitations regarding specific projects and processes.

If a client is making unreasonable demands and worse yet, doing so fully aware that they are, it can effectively poison a work environment and existing strategies. That can negatively impact everything from quality control to operating costs. In these instances, such an unreasonable client may only consider their perspective without appreciation for what you can and cannot presently accomplish for them. If they are simply asking for too much and not accepting your terms professionally, it may be time to move on.

2.Failure or Delays with Paying

A client who doesn’t pay or is erratic and/or slow with their payments is bad for business. You’ll find it harder to balance the books and maintain an accurate budget. And it’s also an indicator they are either encountering financial difficulties or simply do not care about fulfilling their end of the bargain. In such instances, it is best to sever contracts with them. You don’t want to give away your expertise and receive no gain.

3.Lack of Mutual Respect

Clients who are erratic, inconsistent, or simply insulting with their communication and attitude towards a business can make a work environment incredibly toxic. It is important to attempt to repair the relationship as best as possible and work with them towards an ideal solution that respects both sides. However, if the client is outright disrespectful and unwilling to cooperate from a professional perspective, it’s time to cut ties and move on without looking back.

4.Refusal to Listen

Some clients have a specific vision that is detailed and meticulously planned to the point where any input from your team is completely ignored. But if they have signed up with your business, what is the point if they are outright refusing to accept your help?

5.Working with a Competitor in Secret

Working with a competitor is the last thing you want a client to do. Even worse, if you have initiated a project with them and they take your work to a competitor with a service or rate that benefits them more, it can cause irreparable damage to your company’s success. These clients are not willing to consider your best interests or be professional, and they need to go.

6.Threats and Harassment

You might not want to believe it, but there are clients out there who will simply do anything to get their way. Are you receiving angry calls at 4 a.m. threatening employees or your business itself? Have you been receiving harassing emails and social media interactions that put your company in a negative light? If so, it’s time to end the relationship. Yesterday.

Firing any client is a stressful thing to do, and nobody wants to do it. These examples are absolute grounds for termination of a contract with a client. However, as your business’s reputation, motivation, and success hangs in the balance.

Brian Gow is the President of Scheel Window & Door. See Brian Gow's full bio here.