Posted by Steve Marr in Untagged
Occasionally I hear from someone that they’ve fired their customer or client and sound as if they are bragging about it. Generally I feel this is a mistake.
At one point in my international trade career I dealt with a man named “Otto” who was a real problem. He would buy machinery from factories in Europe, and we arranged shipping them back to the United States where he would resell the equipment. Otto was a tremendous consumer of time, my time as well as some staff time. I thought about firing Otto. Then, the idea came to me that rather than firing him and telling Otto to find somebody else; why didn’t I price the job to include the extra work he caused? The next time he asked for a quote, I raised the price to cover what I called the aggravation involved in what I knew would be time-consuming follow-up work. While Otto complained a bit about the price, he still accepted the quotation. He was always a bit of a problem, but at least we got paid for the work. Looking back this was a better solution than simply firing a client.