#FreelanceFriday: firing a client

As a freelancer, you quickly learn that it’s important to have as many clients as possible. More clients mean a healthier bank balance every month. We never really think about firing clients … until one (or two) come along and we know we would be happier not having them around.

Whether the client pays late or is difficult, or you simply do not have the capacity to fulfil the brief – the time will arrive that you and your client may need to part ways.

How do you do this? Do you simply walk away and not look back? Do you opt for diplomacy and tact? Or do you leave the door open for the future?

JustMeneesha, Meneesha Govender, blog, freelance, freelancer, entrepreneur

Ending a relationship with a client is not always easy. I’ve agonised over the best way to do this without burning bridges.

These are questions that plagued me recently when I had to make decisions about continuing a relationship with a client I was working with for some time.

One thing freelancers will tell you off the bat – never drop a client too quickly. Firing a client has to be balanced with working with annoying, demanding or low-paying clients who sap us of energy that could be better spent pursuing more attractive gigs.

But sometimes we just have to fire a client. Knowing how to do this is crucial.

Notice period

The first thing I instituted in my own process is a notice period. Too often I’ve dealt with people who work for me and don’t offer me the courtesy of notice of intention. It drives me to distraction. So, why would I do that to someone else? It’s courteous and appropriate to give a minimum of two weeks’ notice. This gives your client time to make alternate arrangements. And it gives them a chance to ponder your work and its value.

Counteroffers

A colleague told me of a time she informed her client that she was moving on, only to be offered a higher salary to stay. My colleague was leaving because the relationship between her and the client had broken down. But she chose to accept the counteroffer over going with her gut that the old problems will remain. Two-and-a-half months later, she left for good.

The moral of that story: extra cash (unless that was the original reason for you leaving) is not a trade-off for the underlying problems.

Future work

Always keep the door open for future work. It is just good business practice. Freelancing is an unpredictable beast, so I believe in trying not to burn my bridges unless I really have to.

Blame game

Diplomacy in business is key. Even if your client is annoying and miserly, there is no need to be rude. “I’m leaving because you don’t pay me enough” just does not cut it. Even if the client is the one not paying you enough. No matter how good you are, blaming and being rude about is just bad manners.

“I want to let you know I am moving on to other opportunities. I will complete all outstanding assignments and our final day of work will be xxxx, 2018” sounds and is more professional. Now, while you may be holding back on telling your client exactly why you are leaving, it is certainly a way to keep the door open for future opportunities to work together. And believe me, that is more important than telling someone where to get off.

Contingency plan

This is one of the biggest problems we grapple with as freelancers. Should we let a paying gig go without securing another in its place? Ideally, I want to maintain a steady base income every month. Any interruption could be the precursor to a train smash further down the track. It’s never easy making this call, but my advice is to try to keep as much control of the situation as possible. Bide your time and work on contingency plans.

However, I am the first to concede that sometimes it is a necessary (and even humane) act to sever all ties before al the wheels fall off. This may be in the form of unacceptable or ethically questionable demands, ridiculously tight deadlines, asking you to deliver work that you aren’t happy with. In a case like this, I ask myself if the work I did is worthy of my portfolio. If the answer is no, then maybe I need to move on.

Olive branch

There are times when we simply outgrow a client, or we are forced to move on for some reason – often that reason has to do with remuneration. In a case like this consider lessening the blow in some way. I recently moved on from a social media management gig because my client simply could not afford to pay me. I offered her a free training session so that she could manage her own brand online. I also put her in touch with students who could assist her at a lower cost.

This kind of referral system has the added bonus for me. Being positive about a client as well as other freelancers is also about managing your own reputation in what can be a cut-throat business.

Firing clients is never easy – even for the most seasoned entrepreneur. It can be a stressful experience if you do not have the tools to handle it diplomatically. What I’ve shared are just a few ways you can end a relationship on a good note and leave the door open for future work.

Read more of my #FreelanceFriday blogs here.

Spread the love

About Meneesha

Online and books editor by day, mum even while I sleep, individual all the time. I live in the beautiful city of Durban - the unpolished gem in South Africa. If I didn't have a family, I'd be that crazy cat lady your mum probably warned you not to feed! Blogging is where I share, vent, rant, laugh and generally be myself. Join the ride!

106 Comments

  1. There are certainly a lot of details like that to take into account. That is a great indicate raise. I supply the thoughts above as general ideas but clearly there are concerns like the one you bring up where the most essential thing will be operating in honest good faith. I don?t recognize if best methods have emerged around things like that, yet I make certain that your work is plainly identified as a fair game. Both kids and also girls feel the effect of just a moment?s pleasure, for the remainder of their lives.

  2. Thanks for your personal marvelous posting! I truly enjoyed reading it, you might be a great author.I will remember to bookmark your blog and will eventually come back someday. I want to encourage you to continue your great posts, have a nice afternoon!

  3. Hi there just wanted to give you a quick heads up. The text in your article seem to be running off the screen in Firefox. I’m not sure if this is a format issue or something to do with internet browser compatibility but I figured I’d post to let you know. The layout look great though! Hope you get the problem solved soon. Cheers

  4. Hi there! Someone in my Myspace group shared this site with us so I came to take a look. I’m definitely enjoying the information. I’m bookmarking and will be tweeting this to my followers! Terrific blog and brilliant design.

  5. Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it seems as though you relied on the video to make your point. You clearly know what youre talking about, why throw away your intelligence on just posting videos to your blog when you could be giving us something informative to read?

  6. Does your website have a contact page? I’m having problems locating it but, I’d like to send you an email. I’ve got some creative ideas for your blog you might be interested in hearing. Either way, great website and I look forward to seeing it grow over time.

  7. you have a terrific blog below! would you such as to make some invite messages on my blog site?

  8. This internet site is truly a walk-through for all of the info you wanted concerning this and didn?t understand who to ask. Glimpse here, and you?ll most definitely discover it.

  9. In my view, individual that use the might, might transcend this surrounding.

  10. Do you have a spam issue on this website; I also am a blogger, and I was wanting to know your situation; we have created some nice practices and we are looking to trade methods with others, please shoot me an email if interested.

  11. Hi there! I could have sworn I’ve been to this website before but after reading through some of the post I realized it’s new to me. Anyhow, I’m definitely glad I found it and I’ll be book-marking and checking back often!

  12. Nice post. I learn some thing more difficult on various blogs everyday. It will always be stimulating you just read content using their company writers and use a little something from their site. I’d would prefer to use some with all the content in my small weblog no matter whether you don’t mind. Natually I’ll provide you with a link on the internet weblog. Many thanks sharing.

  13. Hi! This is my first comment here so I just wanted to give a quick shout out and tell you I really enjoy reading through your articles. Can you recommend any other blogs/websites/forums that go over the same topics? Appreciate it!

  14. I am really enjoying the theme/design of your website. Do you ever run into any web browser compatibility problems? A couple of my blog readers have complained about my blog not working correctly in Explorer but looks great in Firefox. Do you have any tips to help fix this problem?

  15. Today, I went to the beach front with my kids. I found a sea shell and gave it to my 4 year old daughter and said “You can hear the ocean if you put this to your ear.” She put the shell to her ear and screamed. There was a hermit crab inside and it pinched her ear. She never wants to go back! LoL I know this is totally off topic but I had to tell someone!

  16. Hi there! This post couldn’t be written any better! Reading through this post reminds me of my previous room mate! He always kept chatting about this. I will forward this write-up to him. Fairly certain he will have a good read. Thank you for sharing!

  17. I’m curious to find out what blog system you’re working with? I’m having some small security problems with my latest site and I would like to find something more secure. Do you have any recommendations?

  18. Wow! This blog looks exactly like my old one! It’s on a entirely different topic but it has pretty much the same page layout and design. Great choice of colors!

  19. There are absolutely a great deal of details like that to take into account. That is an excellent indicate raise. I use the thoughts over as general ideas yet plainly there are inquiries like the one you raise where one of the most important point will be operating in straightforward good faith. I don?t understand if best practices have emerged around points like that, yet I make sure that your work is plainly determined as a level playing field. Both kids and girls really feel the effect of just a moment?s enjoyment, for the remainder of their lives.

  20. There are certainly a lot of information like that to take into consideration. That is a fantastic indicate raise. I supply the thoughts over as basic inspiration but clearly there are concerns like the one you bring up where the most essential point will be operating in truthful good faith. I don?t know if best techniques have actually arised around things like that, but I make sure that your work is clearly determined as an up for grabs. Both boys and also women really feel the impact of just a moment?s enjoyment, for the remainder of their lives.

  21. This website is actually a walk-through for all of the info you wanted concerning this and also didn?t recognize that to ask. Glance right here, and also you?ll absolutely uncover it.

  22. I?d need to get in touch with you below. Which is not something I generally do! I take pleasure in reading an article that will make individuals assume. Also, many thanks for permitting me to comment!

  23. Aw, this was an actually good blog post. In suggestion I want to place in creating like this furthermore? taking some time and also real effort to make a very good post? yet what can I claim? I hesitate alot as well as by no means seem to get something done.

  24. you have an excellent blog site here! would certainly you such as to make some invite posts on my blog?

  25. When I initially commented I clicked the -Notify me when brand-new comments are included- checkbox as well as now each time a remark is included I obtain 4 emails with the same comment. Exists any way you can remove me from that service? Thanks!

  26. A fascinating discussion deserves comment. I believe that you must write extra on this subject, it might not be a taboo subject yet generally individuals are not enough to speak on such subjects. To the next. Cheers

  27. I?m amazed, I must say. Actually rarely do I run into a blog that?s both enlightening as well as amusing, and let me tell you, you have hit the nail on the head. Your idea is outstanding; the concern is something that not nearly enough people are speaking intelligently around. I am very delighted that I came across this in my look for something connecting to this.

  28. You made some suitable factors there. I viewed the internet for the problem and also found most individuals will support with your website.

  29. You made some respectable points there. I looked on the internet for the issue and discovered most people will support with your site.

  30. Very great post. I simply stumbled upon your blog and wished to mention that I have truly loved surfing around
    your weblog posts. In any case I’ll be subscribing for your rss feed
    and I am hoping you write once more soon!

  31. When I originally commented I clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now each time a remark is included I obtain four e-mails with the exact same comment. Exists any way you can remove me from that solution? Thanks!

  32. An impressive share, I just given this onto a colleague who was doing a little evaluation on this. And also he as a matter of fact got me breakfast since I found it for him. smile. So let me reword that: Thnx for the treat! However yeah Thnkx for spending the moment to discuss this, I really feel strongly about it and like learning more on this subject. Preferably, as you end up being competence, would certainly you mind updating your blog with more details? It is extremely valuable for me. Big thumb up for this blog post!

  33. I am typically to blog writing and i actually value your content. The post has really peaks my interest. I am going to bookmark your website and keep checking for brand-new details.

  34. I was really happy to discover this web-site. I wished to thanks for your time for this remarkable read!! I certainly taking pleasure in every little bit of it and also I have you bookmarked to have a look at brand-new things you article.

  35. It’s an remarkable post in support of all the internet people; they will take advantage from
    it I am sure.

  36. This is the ideal blog for any person that intends to find out about this subject. You realize a lot its almost tough to say with you (not that I in fact would want?HaHa). You certainly put a brand-new spin on a topic thats been discussed for many years. Fantastic stuff, simply terrific!

  37. Every weekend i used to pay a visit this web page, for the reason that i wish for
    enjoyment, for the reason that this this web site conations genuinely fastidious funny data too.

  38. I really like what you guys tend to be up too. This type of clever work and reporting!
    Keep up the superb works guys I’ve included you guys to blogroll.
    cheap flights 31muvXS

  39. Hi to every one, for the reason that I am really eager of reading this weblog’s post to be updated
    on a regular basis. It includes pleasant information. y2yxvvfw cheap
    flights

  40. Please let me know if you’re looking for a article writer for your site.
    You have some really good articles and I think I would be a
    good asset. If you ever want to take some of the load
    off, I’d love to write some content for your blog in exchange for a link back
    to mine. Please send me an email if interested. Many thanks!

  41. The next time I review a blog site, I hope that it doesn’t disappoint me as much as this one. I suggest, I know it was my option to read, yet I really assumed youd have something fascinating to state. All I hear is a number of whimpering about something that you can deal with if you werent also active searching for focus.

  42. Can I just say what a relief to find a person who really knows what theyre discussing on the internet. You most definitely recognize just how to bring a problem to light and make it crucial. Even more people need to read this and recognize this side of the tale. I cant believe youre not a lot more prominent because you certainly have the gift.

  43. I discovered your blog website on google and also inspect a few of your early messages. Remain to keep up the excellent operate. I just added up your RSS feed to my MSN Information Visitor. Seeking ahead to reading more from you later on!?

  44. This is the ideal blog site for any person that intends to discover this topic. You realize so much its practically hard to say with you (not that I actually would want?HaHa). You most definitely placed a new spin on a topic thats been covered for years. Great things, just fantastic!

  45. Hi, I do believe this is an excellent site. I stumbledupon it 😉 I am going to revisit yet again since I saved as a favorite it. Money and freedom is the best way to change, may you be rich and continue to help other people.

  46. Can I just claim what a relief to locate a person that actually recognizes what theyre talking about on the net. You absolutely understand how to bring a concern to light and make it important. More people require to read this and also recognize this side of the tale. I cant believe youre not extra popular due to the fact that you definitely have the present.

  47. You made some good points there. I viewed on the net for the issue and also located most people will accompany with your internet site.

  48. I?d have to contact you here. Which is not something I generally do! I appreciate reading a message that will certainly make people think. Additionally, thanks for enabling me to comment!

  49. Heya i’m for the first time here. I found this board and I find
    It really useful & it helped me out much. I hope to give something back and aid others like you helped me.

    adreamoftrains website host

  50. Youre so cool! I do not mean Ive review anything such as this before. So good to locate somebody with some original ideas on this subject. realy thanks for starting this up. this site is something that is required online, a person with a little creativity. helpful work for bringing something new to the web!

  51. Ahaa, its nice discussion regarding this article
    at this place at this blog, I have read all that, so at this
    time me also commenting here.

  52. I am usually to blogging and also i really value your content. The write-up has really peaks my interest. I am going to bookmark your site and also maintain looking for brand-new info.

  53. Hello there! This is my first visit to your blog! We are a collection of volunteers and starting a new initiative in a community in the same niche. Your blog provided us useful information to work on. You have done a wonderful job!

  54. This design is steller! You certainly know how to keep a reader amused. Between your wit and your videos, I was almost moved to start my own blog (well, almost…HaHa!) Fantastic job. I really enjoyed what you had to say, and more than that, how you presented it. Too cool!

  55. It’s an awesome article for all the web users; they will get advantage from it I am sure.

  56. This website is really a walk-through for every one of the info you desired about this and didn?t know who to ask. Glimpse right here, and also you?ll definitely discover it.

  57. You made some decent points there. I looked on the internet for the issue and also located most people will accompany with your web site.

  58. Great blog post. I discover something more tough on various blogs everyday. It will constantly be promoting to check out content from various other writers and exercise a little something from their shop. I?d favor to utilize some with the web content on my blog whether you don?t mind. Natually I?ll offer you a web link on your internet blog. Thanks for sharing.

  59. I was really pleased to find this web-site. I wanted to thanks for your time for this remarkable read!! I certainly appreciating every little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post.

  60. It’s actually very complex in this active life to listen news on TV, thus I only use internet for that purpose, and obtain the most recent information.

  61. Hi! I simply want to offer a significant thumbs up for the wonderful details you have below on this message. I will be coming back to your blog site for even more soon.

  62. I?d have to consult you below. Which is not something I typically do! I take pleasure in reviewing a message that will make individuals think. Additionally, many thanks for allowing me to comment!

  63. This post offers clear idea in support of the new visitors
    of blogging, that really how to do blogging.

  64. The next time I check out a blog site, I really hope that it doesn’t disappoint me as high as this one. I suggest, I recognize it was my option to check out, yet I in fact thought youd have something intriguing to say. All I listen to is a number of whimpering concerning something that you can take care of if you werent as well active searching for attention.

  65. I think the admin of this site is in fact working hard in support of his web site,
    because here every information is quality based material.

  66. Hey there are using WordPress for your site platform?
    I’m new to the blog world but I’m trying to get started and set up
    my own. Do you require any html coding knowledge to make your own blog?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated!

  67. Area on with this write-up, I genuinely believe this internet site requires much more consideration. I?ll possibly be again to review a lot more, thanks for that info.

  68. extremely good post, i definitely enjoy this site, go on it

  69. Youre so cool! I don’t intend Ive read anything similar to this prior to. So good to find somebody with some original thoughts on this subject. realy thank you for beginning this up. this website is something that is required online, a person with a little creativity. valuable work for bringing something brand-new to the net!

  70. Im thankful for the article post.Much thanks again. Want more.

  71. extremely great article, i certainly like this web site, go on it

  72. extremely wonderful message, i certainly love this website, continue it

  73. The next time I check out a blog site, I really hope that it does not disappoint me as much as this. I mean, I understand it was my selection to check out, yet I actually assumed youd have something intriguing to claim. All I hear is a number of whining about something that you could repair if you werent also hectic looking for attention.

  74. I?m pleased, I need to say. Truly hardly ever do I run into a blog site that?s both informative and also amusing, and also let me tell you, you have hit the nail on the head. Your idea is superior; the problem is something that not nearly enough individuals are talking intelligently about. I am very happy that I came across this in my look for something relating to this.

  75. Can I simply claim what an alleviation to find a person who really understands what theyre talking about online. You definitely know exactly how to bring an issue to light and make it important. More people need to read this and recognize this side of the story. I angle think youre not much more preferred since you definitely have the present.

  76. Excellent beat ! I would like to apprentice even as you
    amend your site, how could i subscribe for a blog website?
    The account aided me a appropriate deal. I have been tiny bit familiar
    of this your broadcast offered shiny transparent concept

  77. Hi, Neat post. There is an issue along with your site in internet
    explorer, would test this? IE nonetheless is the marketplace chief and a good portion of folks will leave out your fantastic
    writing because of this problem.

  78. I?m pleased, I need to claim. Truly rarely do I come across a blog that?s both instructional and also amusing, and also let me tell you, you have actually struck the nail on the head. Your idea is superior; the issue is something that inadequate people are speaking intelligently about. I am really satisfied that I stumbled across this in my search for something associating with this.

  79. After study a few of the blog posts on your website currently, and I genuinely like your way of blog writing. I bookmarked it to my bookmark web site checklist and also will certainly be inspecting back soon. Pls have a look at my website as well and let me recognize what you think.

  80. Hi! I just want to provide a significant thumbs up for the great info you have below on this message. I will certainly be returning to your blog for more quickly.

  81. As far as me being a member here, I wasn’t aware that I was a member for any days, actually. When the article was published I received a username and password, so that I could participate in Comments, That would explain me stumbuling upon this post. But we’re certainly all members in the world of ideas.

  82. When I originally commented I clicked the -Inform me when brand-new comments are added- checkbox as well as currently each time a remark is included I get 4 e-mails with the exact same comment. Exists any way you can remove me from that solution? Thanks!

  83. Aw, this was a really wonderful blog post. In suggestion I would like to put in creating similar to this in addition? taking some time and also actual effort to make a great article? but what can I say? I postpone alot as well as never seem to get something done.

  84. I?m satisfied, I need to state. Truly rarely do I run into a blog that?s both informative as well as enjoyable, and also let me inform you, you have actually struck the nail on the head. Your idea is outstanding; the concern is something that not nearly enough individuals are speaking smartly about. I am very satisfied that I came across this in my search for something connecting to this.

  85. I precisely needed to say thanks once more. I do not know the things that I could possibly have created in the absence of those smart ideas documented by you on my concern. Completely was a alarming matter in my position, nevertheless coming across the well-written mode you solved it forced me to jump with joy. I am grateful for your information and even hope that you find out what a great job that you are accomplishing educating men and women all through your site. I am certain you have never got to know any of us.

  86. I’m really enjoying the design and layout of your site. It’s a very easy on the eyes which makes it much more enjoyable for me to come here and visit more often. Did you hire out a designer to create your theme? Great work!

  87. you have a great blog site here! would certainly you such as to make some welcome posts on my blog?

  88. omg! can’t imagine how fast time pass, after August, ber months time already and Setempber is the first Christmas season in my place, I really love it!

  89. I simply want to mention I’m all new to weblog and seriously loved you’re web site. More than likely I’m want to bookmark your website . You actually come with outstanding articles. Appreciate it for sharing your website page.

  90. Thanks so much for the blog post.

  91. I like this website very much, Its a very nice office to read and incur information.

  92. I like the valuable information you provide in your articles.

  93. I like the valuable information you provide in your articles.

  94. Like!! Great article post.Really thank you! Really Cool.

  95. Hello to every one, as I am really eager of reading this web site’s post to be updated daily.

    It contains fastidious material.

  96. I think that is among the so much vital information for me.
    And i’m satisfied studying your article. But want to
    commentary on few common things, The website taste is wonderful,
    the articles is really great : D. Just right task, cheers

  97. What i don’t understood is actually how you’re now not actually much more neatly-appreciated than you might be now.
    You are so intelligent. You recognize therefore considerably
    in the case of this topic, produced me for my part imagine it from a lot of
    numerous angles. Its like men and women don’t seem to be involved
    except it is one thing to do with Girl gaga! Your individual stuffs nice.
    Always take care of it up!

  98. I couldn’t refrain from commenting. Well written!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *