The saying goes that “the customer is always right,” but in reality, saying goodbye to bad clients often leads businesses to better pastures. They come in all shapes and sizes: fear-mongering, debt-avoiding, chronically-cursing, and the list goes on. Here is how to identify what kinds of clients to kindly push aside in business.
Peppercomm co-founder Steve Cody offers five specific types to watch out for in clients. What all of these individuals have in common is an essential disrespect for the businesses with which they work, and one of Cody’s favorite financial tips for businesses is to get rid of them. As client-business relations are meant to be mutually beneficial, he highlights any business’ interest in shedding relations with others who do not hold the same esteem, as told to Inc Magazine.
Plus, despite the initial dip in profit that axing a bad customer may yield, Cody claims doing so is worth it if only for the upswing of energy among employees. Getting rid of a truly bad client may only benefit a business in the long run, making room for new respectful customers and relieving workers of emotional burdens that come with such relationships.
Dropping the hammer
Once a business owner identifies a toxic customer, he must take action. To be sure it is truly the individual or partner business, it is in a business owner’s best interest to first evaluate the situation. Nellie Akalp, CorpNet CEO, suggests via Mashable that business owners take a look at how they respond to the client and consider experimenting with a different approach.
If after taking a step back the business owner is still seeing red, it may be time to cut ties. Firing a customer should be similar to firing an employee: It is best to approach him or her with ease rather than heightened emotions. Akalp recommends offering as little elaboration as possible when having this conversation with your soon-to-be ex-client.
As bad customers are, well, bad customers, they can’t be expected to take things well when let go. Cody reflects on an ex-client who commonly swore when communicating, proving himself unable to communicate without expletives and becoming a staple for inside jokes within his company, according to Inc.
Cody’s stories illustrate that while the actually firing part can be difficult, the memory of bad customers is usually a good laugh, proving once again that losing those pegged as truly problematic is best practice for any business.