How to break up with a client…

business coach australia

Why would you not want to work with someone was going to pay you?!  There are plenty of reasons!  Some people are just hard work, maybe they never pay their invoices on time and perhaps someone is not aligned to the direction of your business.  They might consume a lot more of your time and energy than is worth the money.

Whatever the reason, sometimes saying “no” is the best thing you can do for the future of your business (and your sanity!).


Breaking up with a client is like breaking up with someone you are dating (well, not exactly, but there are some similarities!) Here are my tips on how to do it well:

1.Be firm. Have you ever tried to dump someone and they try and talk you out of it?  It can be the same with clients!  “Please… I can change”. Chances are if you have come to the conclusion you want to end it, falling back into it again will just land you in the same spot again days/weeks/months later.  Stick to your guns and go through with it.

2.Have a clear and honest reason. Never lie, always have a reason as to why you want to break up with your client. “Right now I am looking to work with clients who are in the services industry” or “I don’t have the time right now to offer you the level of service you require”. Honesty is the best policy!

3.Don’t be an asshole. You don’t say to someone “I’m breaking up with you because you are boring”, stick to point 2, but be gentle with people. Make it about YOU not THEM i.e; “I’m a party animal and I want to be in a relationship with someone who loves to go to festivals like me”.

4. Keep it open. You never know what the future holds! While right now you might not want to work with them, in the future you might have a staff member who deals perfectly with this personality type, or you might have a project you could partner on!  Keep it friendly and say “I’d love to connect on LinkedIn and maybe in the future we can work together again”.


I really hope these tips help, it’s never easy breaking up with someone, it can be challenging, but sometimes you just have do it!


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