A business coach may say that a problematic, argumentative or conflict oriented client is just plain bad for business, productivity and the actual bottom line. It's really up to you as a business owner to make up your mind whether it's the right moment to actually make the move to terminate that client.
There can be many reasons involved. For instance, sometimes certain clients may refuse to pay what they owe or ignore the mutually agreed upon payment schedule. Other times, they will not keep their end of the bargain, which might involve providing you with information, materials or other important items that you might need to perform your end of the bargain. Occasionally, a client may be obnoxious or overly demanding to staff or to yourself, or may think that they can "get away with anything" because to their particular position. At other times, your bottom line will dictate your reason - the money simply isn't good enough.
Have you really tried to make this work? This is certainly a question that your business coach will ask you. After all, we all know how difficult it can be to get new clients, so it certainly makes sense to put as much effort as possible into trying to salvage a relationship. Try enhancing your customer service, using conciliatory language and trying to understand their point of view. If you can, set things right.
When all else fails, it is time to end the relationship. Now you can go about this in several different ways. You might try the subtle approach - increase your rates, appraise your agreement and see what happens. Of course they might agree to your rates, which is good from one perspective. Chances are though that they will decline and end the association. Always be polite, whichever route you decide to take. Never lose your temper and never burn bridges. Listen to your business coach and always be professional when you deliver the news; try never to be downbeat. All interactive human relationships benefit from a positive spin.
Try and broach the news in positive terms, citing a benefit as the primary point of your conversation, with the secondary element relating to the actual termination. Studies have shown, and business coach reviews concur, that if you can approach a controversial topic in a positive light, it will make it easier to achieve your goals. For example, you might make the focal point of the conversation the fact that your business has grown in a different and new direction, but that you will not be able to serve his or her needs properly as a consequence.Try to offer an alternative solution and to make a bridge between yourselves and the future.
As your business coach will keep repeating - always leave on the best possible terms, as you never know when a recommendation or referral might benefit you!