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A Definitive Guide to Identifying and Firing Bad Clients

A Definitive Guide to Identifying and Firing Bad Clients

If you’re an agency owner or just a freelancer, you know that the clients you get can vary a lot! Some are amazing, and give enough time and money to put your best work out!

However, some aren’t that great to work with. So instead of letting them take control of your life, you need to deal with them. But how do you do it? Stay tuned to find out.

Why Do You Sometimes Need to Fire Clients?

Why Fire Clients

The biggest problem many small agencies and freelancers have with clients is that they are scared to fire them. That’s because they are paying money to you. And if you “break up” with them, you won’t get any money from them.

While that’s a valid concern, it shouldn’t be your excuse for not taking action. The thing is, firing clients will be better for you in the long term as you’ll have time for higher-paying clients.

Plus, your bad clients will take even more time away with the countless revisions and back-and-forth communication.

So instead of wasting your time on work that you might not get paid, you should instead start firing those clients so you can take your small business to new heights.

How to Identify a Bad Client?

But before you do and go out there to end contracts with clients you don’t like, it’s best to take a couple of steps back and think if the client truly is a bad one. That will help you to save yourself from ending relationships with good clients.

So how do you identify a bad client? Well, there are a few ways to do it:

  •  They have unrealistic expectations – If you see one who wants you to complete a project with an unrealistic deadline, you probably have gotten a bad client.
  • They promise you “future work” – If you see a potential client who wants you to work for free with a promise of future work, then probably this customer wants to take advantage of you without paying for anything.
  • They don’t respond to you – If you see a client that doesn’t respond to your questions, then you’ve probably stumbled upon a bad client. That could cause late payments which you don’t want.

While these three ways give a good outlook on which clients are you’ve not, it’s not bulletproof. For this, I highly suggest you start collecting data on each client you have. That way, you’ll have a better understanding of your clients, and you’ll make better decisions in the future.

Learn more about it in my How To Collect Business Data Successfully blog post.

4 Tips for Dealing and Avoiding With Bad Clients

Now that you understand who a bad client is, it’s time to deal with them. With these four tips, you will learn how to end your relationship with bad clients and avoid them in the first place.

Tip #1 – Turn them into good clients

One of the best ways to deal with bad clients is turning them into good ones. And here’s why!

The thing is, most bad clients don’t have experience with what you’re working on. They might think that your work is easy, so it shouldn’t cost that much or take that much time.

But if you can show them how hard it is, most of them will have more appreciation for your work and most likely will be willing to pay you more or give you a longer time frame to finish your project.

Here’s how you can do it:

  •  Co-work with your clients – If there’s a possibility, start co-working with your client. That way, they’ll see firsthand what it takes you to finish something and what you go through before sending out the finished product.
  • Be more transparent – Talk about the process you go through before sending the finished product. While that might not be as convincing as co-working, it could still open the client’s eyes.

Tip #2 – Fire them in a professional way

If you cannot work with them or they refuse to change, it’s best for both of you to end the relationship between you two. However, don’t go out there insulting your client, as that could backfire and ruin your reputation. Instead, here are a few ways to deal with them:

  •  Give them a refund – If you have the money, it’s best to give it back to them and say that you two aren’t a fit in a professional manner.
  • Refer to another freelancer/agency – If you know someone who could do what your client is asking from you, you should help them out. That way, They won’t have any hard feelings for you.

Tip #3 – Tell them simply what you do

Your clients might not understand what you can offer to them. If your title designer or design team, that could mean many things. For example, some might think you can do social media graphics, while others believe you can create a beautiful WordPress website.

So instead of confusing your clients, it’s best to tell them what exactly you can do for them. For example, instead of having a title of a designer on your profile/website, you should have something like this:

  • WordPress Website Designer
  • Modern & Minimalistic Logo Designer
  • Social Media Graphic Designer for Instagram

#4 – Talk about your price & set expectations

Another way you can avoid bad clients is by setting expectations and mentioning the price on your website. That way, you can avoid people who won’t be willing to pay for the price or with your suggested timeframe.


And that’s how you deal with bad clients! Once you’ve dealt with them, you’ll be able to free up your time to work with clients that not only pay you but respect what you’re doing.

 And if you need any help with your agency or freelancing career, then be sure to book a coaching call with me! I used to be an Account Manager for an international company, so I’m sure I can help you with this topic!


How To Use The Covey Matrix To Smash Your Goals

How To Use The Covey Matrix To Smash Your Goals

Previously I talked about the importance of managing your time efficiently. One of the most important aspects of this is to evaluate the tasks in your life. Hence, you want to lay them out in a time management matrix. This gives you the critical information you need when planning how to work your way through the list

What Is A Time Management Matrix

The Time Management matrix goes by many names – the Covey Matrix, the Eisenhower Matrix, the Urgent Matrix, and many, many other variants. It’s been discovered and reused by business planners for decades. Presidents have used it. CEOs have used it. So have work-from-home parents and struggling students.

It’s all about the nature of each task. Let’s look at a grid with four cubes in it.

Tasks get put into whichever of these four cubes makes the most sense.

Seems simple, right? But if we look at the tasks we tend to do in life, a lot of them somehow end up being the “urgent but not important” ones. The things that cry the loudest and perhaps are quick, easy, and painless to do. It brings a sense of progress. But in the meantime, urgent and important things are often left undone because they seem complicated or stressful. And the non-urgent things keep getting shunted to the back of the list until suddenly they become urgent.

The aim of this matrix is to let you look logically at the items you have before you. 

The Covey Matrix Explained

Urgent And Important (Do It Now)

Yes, these have to be done. If your car’s tire goes flat, it has to be fixed. You should always leave time in your schedule for these items which can pop up by surprise. That being said, it’s important to track your schedule over time. If certain things keep popping into this area, look for ways to head them off before they become urgent. It can sometimes mean you aren’t spending enough time in the second category, which is:

Not Urgent And Important (Schedule It)

The more you can work steadily on these important things at a reasonable pace, the better life in general goes. That flow of calm, smooth energy tends to maximize progress and quality. Bills should be paid on time. Correspondence should be kept up to date. Not only does it build a better system in general, but it also reduces stress on those involved.

Urgent And Not Important (Delegate)

We all fall for these tasks. Something exciting is happening. Someone stops by with a question or need. There’s a balance here. We don’t want to ignore everything around us – but there needs to be a focus. Find ways to lessen those distractions. Take steps to remind yourself just what is important to spend your time on, and why.

Not Urgent And Not Important (Don’t Do It)

Ah, the time sinks. We all have them. Sometimes they’re useful in small doses as stress relievers. But if you didn’t have the stress in the first place, you wouldn’t need these to take up even more time. The more you can whittle these tasks out of your schedule, the more time you’ll have available for the key things that have to get done. The more your life will open up to new, soul-filling possibilities.

How To Get Started

It’s a good idea to fill out this Covey Matrix regularly at first, so you get a firm handle on where your time is going. A downloadable version is available HERE. Once you get into the rhythm of it, it’ll be second nature to consider where a task falls. Still, it’s a good idea to fill in a grid every week or two, just as a reminder of what you need to focus on and where your path is currently heading. 


How To Review Your Marketing Plan

How To Review Your Marketing Plan

Sales are the oxygen of any business. Without it, no business can survive! That is why almost every business makes marketing plans. This way, your company can achieve its business goals and continue growing.

But there’s a major problem with many small businesses. They think it’s just a one-time task! Instead, the plan needs to be tweaked and changed constantly for efficiency. But how do you do it? Stay tuned to find out.

Why It’s So Important to Review Your Marketing Plan?

To put it simply, times change all the time! And with it, something always unexpected happens. Just think about the last two years; a lot happened. First, iOS 14 changed online advertising forever with its new privacy features. And who can forget about the worldwide pandemic going on?

Nobody was able to predict those things! And for that reason alone, you should constantly go over your plans and change them. That way, you’ll adapt quickly and get ahead of all the competition.

Nobody was able to predict those things! And for that reason alone, you should constantly go over your plans and change them. That way, you’ll adapt quickly and get ahead of all the competition.

So how often should you review your business planning? That all depends on your organization, but the rule of thumb is to check it at least every quarter. Also, make sure you involve your team! You never know when some of them come up with better ideas than you!

How to Review Your Marketing Plan

Reviewing a ma

Now that you understand the importance, it’s time to work on your plan. Fortunately, it’s pretty easy! There are only four steps for an effective review. 

Step #1 – Evaluate Your Past Activity

Let’s start off by looking through our current plan. Specifically, let’s read through our presumptions. Once read, we should start comparing them to the existing data and information we have. What did we get right? And more importantly, what did we get wrong?

By answering these questions, we understand what and where we need to change our postulations.

Step #2 – Evaluate Your Marketing Strategy

Now it’s time to look at our marketing strategy. We should first again start by reading through our marketing tactics. Once finished, we should decide if it’s still a viable strategy for today. To help you out, you should ask yourself and your team the following: 

  • Did the tactics work as expected?
  • How did your target market respond to it?
  • Was your marketing reach expanding?

Responding to these questions helps you to see how well your marketing has gone. Also, if you work with a marketing agency, I highly recommend you to speak with them and ask for feedback.

Step #3 – Lessons Learned

By now, you should have a good understanding if your marketing plan was a success or not! However, before going on and updating your plan, we must look back at our own experience.

What mistakes did we make during that time? How could we avoid that in the future? Without acknowledging them, we’re doomed to make the same mistakes over and over again. So, look back, and consider them when updating your plan.

Step #4 – Updating and Implementing Your Marketing Plan

Now all that is left is to start making adjustments to your plans. So take everything to consider and adapt your marketing. And while you’re at it, don’t forget to use the four marketing Ps. That will help you make it even more effective.

If you don’t know how to do it, then find expert help. It’s okay not to know about everything!  While consulting hours can be expensive, they are worth every penny. With their help, not only will you get in the right direction, but you’ll also avoid paying thousands of dollars due to costly mistakes.

 Now that your plan has been altered, it’s time to take action! Make sure you talk everything through with your team. That way, you and your colleagues know exactly what they need to change, making it faster for your company to adapt.


And that’s how you review your marketing plan. I hope you’ve found this blog post helpful and that you’ll implement it in your business. However, if you find yourself stuck in the planning process, I’d be happy to help. I would love to help you out with conducting the review and by showing you how to manage the implementations. Book a scheduling call here.


4 Reasons You Can’t Scale Your Business

4 Reasons You Can’t Scale Your Business

Are you struggling to take your business to the next level? Do you want to scale your business, but no matter how hard you work it just isn’t happening?

I work with a lot of small businesses that have plateaued – they have stopped growing.

Here are four key reasons why:-

Poor Goal Setting

They have set themselves up for failure by not setting SMART Goals.

The goals they have set are unrealistic, which eventually end up demotivating them. This means they start to procrastinate…which means nothing moves forward. You need to have goals that will work for YOU and YOUR BUSINESS model!

No Or Wrong Team

They think they are a superman and that they have to do everything themselves. Juggling all moving parts in a business is not easy. Even superman can only be in one place at once!

Plus, how will your vision come alive if you’re trying to do it all on your strength and skills? You have limitations (think superman and kryptonite). The sooner you accept that and get help, the sooner you can succeed

Lack of Process Implementation

You have lots of ideas and vision, but it is all in your head. Which means no one else can help you out.

Suppose things are not working how you set out. Then it is time to look at your processes and SOPs – WHAT you do, WHY you do it and HOW you do it.

Re-visiting and documenting these will help you evaluate whether the process is productive. Help you streamline the way you work. Plus, allow you to delegate

Lack of Systems

Most small businesses set up systems as they go along. This means they don’t always work as they get bigger.

Having systems and tools that work for where you’re currently in your business BUT ALSO where you want to be is essential for scalability.

If you’re struggling with any of these 4 key points and it is preventing scale your business. Book in a call HERE and we can discuss help and options to take you to the next level.

Smart Goal Setting

Smart Goal Setting ebook
Do you have a list of objectives you want to achieve? Now is the time to upgrade your goals! By writing SMART goals to focus on your objectives and move your goals forward.

Setting SMART goals is easy with my updated e-book. It’s a straightforward guide that explains:-

a) What SMART goals are

b) How they can help you achieve your business and life objectives.

The e-book includes a self-help worksheet. Designed to help you master the SMART goals technique faster, without the worry of where to start. 

How To Achieve Consistency In Your Business

How To Achieve Consistency In Your Business

Fact –  consistency contributes to your company’s bottom line!

Consistency should be a core value and run throughout your business processes. It can make a real difference to how your company grows and to your overall success. You can have the best product or service in the world, but if you do not implement and deliver it constantly, you will never be successful in business

How To Maintain Consistency

Consistency starts with YOU – sorry to be so blunt but that is the truth. The consistency of your business is a representation of your habits/routines. You are the key driver for consistency in your business so the way you plan and schedule tasks ultimately as a huge impact on your wider business

Consistency impacts all areas of your company. If one area doesn’t deliver consistent results, the whole company doesn’t deliver a consistent result. It is a ripple effect. Hence, you have to consider strategies and processes to each business area, in order to help yourself maintain a consistent approach.

Have A Plan

A goal without a plan is just a dream

It’s a little hard to be constant if you don’t have a plan as a starting point. Your plan is your road map, it guides you to your end goal, mapping out all the stops on the way

People tend to get very worked up when faced with writing a business plan. However, it doesn’t have to be something that is pages long or complicated. Nor does it have to be set in stone. It’s Ok to have a basic plan at first, just a framework, from which you can add the structure later.

For example, you could initially commit to posting on social platforms every day. Only as the plan develops will you add detail around what to post and at what times etc.

If you try to plan every element of a business or project from start to finish you will end up feeling overwhelmed, with loads of ideas and thoughts running through your head. It is most effective to start simple with the framework, then add ideas onto this foundation.

Going back to our example there is plenty of advice out on the internet and many would say posting once a day would not be enough to be successful, that it should be 3 or 5 or even more! But you need a plan that you can realistically achieve, one that works with your other business and personal commitments.

It is better to post once a day consistently and increase the number of posts if you have time. Than setting yourself unrealistic targets and burn yourself out trying to achieve them.

You have to be super honest with yourself and what you have time for.

You may be able to do anything but you can’t do everything.


Use something like the Covey Matrix to evaluate and prioritise your daily tasks will help you determine how much time you have each day. From there you can determine what you can consistently achieve with regards to a given project.

Make Your Plan Actionable

Once you have actually created a strategy, bring it to life. Produce schedules that will sustain your plan, make to-do lists and also track your progress.  It sounds simple but putting something in your calendar or planner gives you a far better chance of achieving results.

The bottom line is you need to make time to follow your strategy and then you have to take responsibility for actioning the plan

Develop Processes and Systems

The third piece of the consistency puzzle is to build in systems and procedures that support you and your plans. These can be as easy as a checklist or more complicated like a Customer Relationship Management system. Having suitable systems and procedures in place allows you to follow the plan without missing a step. They give you the tools and structure to remain consistent.

A Word To The Wise

If you attempt to do this for every area of your organization at once, it will appear extremely overwhelming and you are likely to burn-out. So, just like developing a plan, start small and build piece by piece. Do not overwhelm yourself as this will be counterproductive in the long run.

Also, while I’ve said consistency is a good thing, you also need to be flexible. It’s not about having a meltdown because your child is ill and you’ve missed a week of social media posts. 

You are allowed to take a step back, re-evaluate, re-focus and adapt your strategies.  Remember, it’s not about what you do some of the time it’s about what you do most of the time.

Let’s break it down…To be consistent and successful in business you need to:-

  • Get A Plan
  • Take Action
  • Work out a System
  • Evaluate
  • Adjustment Accordingly

Writing it as 5 bullet points makes it look easy, the trouble is the devils in the detail. There is so much more to each bullet point and that is where we often get stuck. We spend ages planning, but then struggle to turn that into actionable plans. Or, we have the processes and systems that are so cumbersome we cannot achieve the plan, so we get demotivated. Or, we get it all in place (hurray!) but we never review so we never grow!

It is not easy, but trust me, the more you practise the better you get and the easier it becomes. It is a case of building structure, routine and habits that work for you and your business.

But it takes time and practises. I know I have been there!

It is easy to do it with a client…plan….put it in place…evaluate…adjust…but you don’t apply it to your day-to-day operations. This is why I offer a range of packages all geared towards giving you the consistency and structure your business needs! Get in touch and I can tell you more