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You’re in Charge of Your Business

Imagine you’re going to have a family portrait made in the morning. You’ve hand picked everyone’s clothes and made sure they were spotless and in crisp condition. That’s when you see it. The big stain on your husband’s suit. It’s 11PM and your pictures are at 9AM.  There isn’t a one hour dry cleaner around but you just HAVE to have the suit clean. So you find the dry cleaner’s home number and start dialing. You can’t understand why they won’t crawl out of bed to clean your husband’s suit for you. Isn’t that their job?

Maybe this is a little extreme of an analogy, but the point is, you wouldn’t call your dry cleaner at home to work when the store is closed. So you must know when to tell your clients ‘NO’. Once you’ve establishing working hours and home hours, don’t make exceptions for clients. You may have just gotten started in your business and you really don’t want to turn anyone away. I made this mistake when I first started. Here’s the thing, if you’re doing a good job, there will always be clients. Don’t overextend yourself or promise something that will cause you to sacrifice your family time or too much sleep. Yes, sleep can be sacrificed but too little sleep produces awful work results.

As for existing clients, if the agreed upon deadline is 1 week away and they call/email you wanting to move it up to just 3 days from now then you must evaluate the situation. If you have plenty of work time and can move it up without changing work or personal obligations then great. If you have to put off other clients, work extra long hours or miss time with your kids then don’t do it.

You both agreed upon a reasonable deadline and they cannot ask you to provide less service to someone else because their circumstances have changed. (Like you and the suit problem from the first paragraph.)
Now there will always be exceptions to every rule. If this is an extremely important client who offers you double the amount agreed upon  because it is a dire issue for them, then maybe consider it. Especially if it just means a few late nights. The most important thing is to remember that you’re in charge, it’s your business and as long as you provide efficient, professional, friendly services there will always be more clients. If you are all of these things then a client that asks you to move something up will respect you for declining and simply wait until the agreed upon deadline.

Michele Casteel is a freelance writer, ghostwriter and novelist who resides with her four rambunctious children and loving husband in the heart of the South. Last year she created her own small publishing company. She has recently released Writing Fiction 101 for beginners http://www.writingfiction101.com

About Stephanie Watson

Mom | Wife | Virtual Assistant | Content Strategist
Stephanie has been working from home for over 20 years as a virtual assistant, template bender, and content writer. She's currently transitioning to business coach. You can learn more about her at her website http://www.barrypublishing.com.

Comments

  1. This is an important aspect to remember in our efforts to please and provide quality work. We can’t just be a servant. We have lives too! 🙂

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