Client pleads poverty


Once again I fell for “things are really bad” story from a client. They did not want to pay fees for additional work.

Yesterday I found out they are going on a holiday somewhere hot and flights alone would cost a lot. If they can afford this, then can pay the additional fees!

I am normally a tight person. Yet I do fall for I cannot afford it stories. The client in question was also behind with their rent. They had agreed an extension with their landlord.

I need to change. How should I? What if the story is true? I am running a business, I should have commercial mind all the time?

On the positive side the client in question has not missed a DD monthly payment. Further, they have been my client for nearly three years. Apart from recent additional work, they are not time consuming. They are an average profit client. This is good.

Here my instincts have not helped! I was/am pushover! How can I change? One way would be saying “Fair enough you cannot afford it at the moment. I will send you my invoice so you can pay when you are in better financial position.” I would be able to tell when preparing their year-end accounts, how the year has been.

This client is not yet on Xero. I intend to add more clients on Xero. This way I will know their financial position.

There is also my own fear of losing the client if I just apply my commercial head. Better to lose a little now then a lot in the future?

People are never easy! I think I will invoice now and pay later approach.