How To Select Better Clients

When was the last time you took a phone call from someone you couldn’t stand?

All of us have people in our lives we avoid.

We all know people we wish we didn’t know.

Each of us has a client, customer or patient who can ruin our day simply by leaving us a voice mail.

The question for you is:  “WHY?”

Not: “Why does this person aggravate you so much?” but “Why is this person on your client roster?”

You have the power to select your clients so why on earth would you work with someone who makes your skin crawl?

Submitted for your consideration are some criteria you may find helpful when you select your clients.

How many of these criteria do you consider when you invite someone into your office?

They Can Afford to Work with You

You are in business to make money.  Charge fees you believe are fair and appropriate and do not work with people who cannot pay you.   Reducing your fee below your comfort level does not make you noble.  It makes you foolish.

If you want to work with someone pro bono, that’s fine.  That is a charitable contribution.   Once in a while, it may help you feel good about yourself to do that.  Do not make it a habit.

They Allow You to Do Your Best Work

An orthopedic surgeon should not routinely perform appendectomies.  A real estate lawyer should not regularly try patent infringement cases.  Liquor store owners should not manage daycare centers.

Select clients who allow you to do your best work.

They Are Decisive

There are few things more frustrating than hanging around with people who take 45 minutes to decide on a soup at dinner.

Working with clients who take forever to make a decision is no less painful.  Your clients should be able to make a decision on engaging you to represent them.  They should also be able to weigh the facts of their case and be able to make decisions in their own best interest once they engage you.

If they cannot make these decisions, you should not select them as clients.

These client selection criteria may seem a bit unusual.  Most people simply use the “check-in-hand” criteria (if the client has a check in hand, you accept it and them).  But those clients, more often than not, will subject you to aggravation and heartbreak.

Take a few minutes right now and examine your own client selection criteria.  Where can you make some changes and how will these changes improve the quality of your business and the quality of your life?