Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Good Business Vs. Bad Business

I believe one of the best skills a consultant can have is to know the difference between good business and bad business. I recently found a great post on this subject:

10 Signs You Should Drop a Client Like a Bad Habit

Earlier this year I quit doing business with a client because I felt he was dragging me down and making my working relationship with him more of chore and less a pleasurable experience. I worked with this person as long as I did out of a sense of loyalty because he came along at a time when I really needed the work.

Big mistake.

The last few years doing business with him was a pain. No responses to my calls, letters or e-mails. Late payments or no payments at all. Keep in mind, he was going through some personal problems that unfortunately involved his business. Mind you, the problems were nothing I could solve or consult him on. I simply wasn't qualified to help. Still, it shouldn't cloud what is right and what is ethical in a working relationship.

When you start out in consulting, I know it is difficult to turn down business even if the request is for something outside of the range of your services. There is a reason why you must stick to your guns and be firm on what you offer who you serve. If you don't, you get into a situation that fosters bad business and when you are in a bad business relationship you then have to do some agonizing soul searching and decide whether or not it is worth the trouble to keep the client or if you should drop them like a bad habit.

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