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Is It Ever Okay to Turn Away Business?

Date: 05/07/2007 | Category: Business | Author: Diana Heeb Bivona

As a small business owner, the loss of business can oftentimes be felt more dramatically than by that of a larger company.  And, if you are a relatively new business, chances are that you are working aggressively to build your client base.  However, I pose the question is it ever okay to turn away business?  In some situations, the answer would be “yes”, particularly if securing that client or account has the potential of damaging your business over the long run.

Not all business relationships make sense and sometimes you need to be able to step back and ask yourself some tough questions.  Here are a few examples when you may need to consider either passing on a new client’s project or telling an existing client you just can’t work with them any longer:

  1. Abusive behavior toward you or your staff.
  2. Distracts you from developing other business or serving other customers.
  3. It simply doesn’t make economic sense.
  4. You just can’t do the work the client needs done.

Bottom lines is you want to develop a client base that best fits your business and that will grow with you.  You don’t want to deliver unsatisfactory service or products, and your clientele will appreciate that you focused on making sure your company could deliver what it promised and that you were a good fit.  To achieve that, you need to know your strengths as well as your limitations.  Saying “no” to a new client or getting rid of an existing client is never easy, but sometimes necessary.  Don’t stress about it if you have to.  After all, they aren’t the last client out there.  The next one is probably waiting…just around the corner.

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