Update on saying no to customers


About a week ago, Pixel Peony (no, that’s not her real name) asked me what to do about really difficult customers. My advice was to dare to say “No!” to those customers that just don’t make you happy at work.

That advice was repeated and fleshed out in all the great comments on that post. Thanks people!

Well, Pixel Peony not only read that advice, she dared to take it, and here’s how things went:

Here’s an update on my work situation. I was honest, but not rude, with my “difficult” client. Ultimately, she wrote back a very angry, vitriolic email and I decided it was for the best not to continue working with her. We haven’t been in touch since her email, but the work relationship is definitely over.

At first I was worried about it, but now I am elated! It’s a big relief to not have to deal with her anger and the general difficulties of working with someone who doesn’t listen, or appreciate my feedback. By contrast, my other main client, at the moment, is open, we communicate well, they are knowledgeable and basically terrific. I am eager to hear their ideas, because we are actually having a two-way discussion. I want to make this client happy and I am happy as a result.

Yes! I love it!

If something at work makes you unhappy, do something about it. And, yes, this includes customers. No one should continue to work with a customer who will not treat them fairly and politely.

6 thoughts on “Update on saying no to customers”

  1. Way to go, Alex. Happiness is about knowing what satisfies you and then setting boundaries around that. When the “bad client/bad employer” issue threatens the boundaries, we have a choice:

    a. Reduce our chances of happiness by ignoring our own rules and letting our boundaries be broken
    b. Increasing our chances of happiness by holding fast to what we believe and allowing our boundaries to seal our satisfaction like a mayonnaise jar. (Can’t believe I just said that).

    Enjoy the downhill!


  2. My wife had a similar incident with one of the company’s big accounts. The lady she spoke to was extremely rude and my wife finally told her that she wasn’t going to speak with her anymore giving her attitude.

    My wife then emailed the owner of the company explaining what had happened, including that the original issue was her fault and that she apologized several times and the lady just wouldn’t let it go.

    She got a response back apologizing to my wife about the behavior of her associate.

    Sometimes standing up for yourself is a good thing.

  3. People don’t realize how expensive a bad customer can be. Really bad customers are bad for your business and it is rare that you could justify keeping them on a profit basis if you truly understood the entire impact they have on a company.

  4. Yes this thing is to be understood who is working for company.By entertaining a bad customer we may get boost in our targets but it effects company very badly.Sales people has to understand this sales is not complete without the payment realisation.Most of the sales people wants to act as customer in house banker.They really dont want to put pressure on customer.

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