Jude Adeoti from Garki Abuja wrote:

I’m a certified interior designer. I love designs and colours. Earlier this year, I quitted my job in a leading IT firm as the head of marketing to concentrate fully on my business. Since I started this business, things have not being rosy.

Most of my clients have not been appreciative of my work. They complain about the quality of the work I do for them. In truth, I know that I’m good at what I do. I think the clients are trying to avoid paying up the balance of my money. This is really having adverse effect on my young company’s bottom-line.

What should I do to remedy the situation?

Answer

Your challenge is a fairly common one, Jude. First of all, you need to dispassionately assess your clients’ complaints. Get a professional or third opinion and make adjustments where necessary. On the other hand, always ensure that your clients have clearly defined and documented expectations before commencing their projects. That way, you will be able to compare the eventual delivery with the expected output, thus leaving no room for subjective judgement. Finally, have a policy of collecting at least 70% payment in advance, and make sure that the advance payment adequately covers your costs such that you can at least break even, even if your balance ends up delayed or unpaid.

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