As entrepreneurs our customers are our boss. They determine our work schedule and project deadlines. If you have a bad customer he or she can cause a tremendous amount of stress and hardship. Or they could choose not to pay you for your product or services, leaving you in a bad financial position. I don’t want that and neither do you. Here’s how to pick good clients so you can focus on what’s truly important: Getting the work done
How To Pick Good Clients: Interview Them
The first step on how to pick good clients is to interview them. That way you can gauge their expectations and whether he or she will be a good customer.
This is a problem for many new entrepreneurs because they don’t want to scare away a client. They are afraid of losing potential income, or may believe another customer will not show up. So they accept anyone and everyone that shows interest in their product or service.
Instead of acting out of desperation you must use reason and critical thinking. Do so by asking the client the following questions (this is not an exhaustive list):
- When do you need this project completed? (If the client is in a rush and you cannot persuade them to be realistic about the time-frame that’s a red flag.)
- Payment is due at this schedule. Can you meet that? (If the customer doesn’t want to agree to your payment schedule or seems iffy, that’s another red flag.)
- Will you sign-off on a contract or document stating what we’re agreeing to? (If the customer doesn’t want to sign-off on any written documentation to show what the expectations on both sides are, that’s another red flag.)
If you ask these questions and others to a potential client and you feel uneasy about their answers that’s a sign you probably don’t want to work with him or her.
How To Pick Good Clients: Get Them Through References
Another way on how to pick good clients is to get them through references. When you get clients because a family member recommended you, or maybe a friend, there’s a connection between you and the client. Thus, if some problems arise the person who recommended him or her to you may get involved because they vouched for that person. That family member or friend doesn’t want to appear to be flaky too because the client they recommended is flaky.
This is also a good option because potential clients may feel better about hiring you because you have a connection with a mutual friend. Thus, that customer thinks you aren’t a scammer or a business with a bad reputation.