customer success manager

It is easy to view revenue as profit and assume that the $500 dollar client is profitable. However, this view ignores the investment of time and the opportunity cost of this time. By removing the distraction of unprofitable customers, you will free up more of your time to focus on profitable accounts with the greatest possibility for growth. By investing more time on these high-value customers, you will be able to maximize profits. You will also increase their loyalty to your company, which will lead to high returns in the long term as those key accounts continue to grow. Go through your customer database to calculate your profit margin on each account, in order to determine which clients are losing you money.

Any covenants or convertible debt triggers that are tied to revenue figures must be well understood. It’s important for the CFO to be as transparent as possible with the various stakeholders of the business by walking them through the financial impact of the plan. This offers an additional opportunity for the business to spread the “fewer but stronger” mantra that will result from the exercise.

Check the contract or engagement letter, ensure all reasonable efforts have been made to complete all of the work. Where possible, complete all contracted work before terminating the engagement. One example of an organization that handles this well is Uber. If you are a user of the ride-share platform, then you know that the customer writes a review of the driver. If a customer gets a one-star review, that serves as a warning to others. Also, in an Orwellian, Animal-Farm way, all customers are important, but there are some customers that are more important than others.


And if it’s their fault, attempt to shift the responsibility elsewhere. Do not let them go before their project is completed. Or, at the very least, without specifying the measures necessary to transfer it to whoever would be dealing for the customer next. We will generally provide them with some time to make other arrangements.

Determining which minimum requirements for working as an independent contractors to rationalize is the critical starting point of the initiative. To do so, detailed analysis must be done at a granular level to determine contribution margin by customer. This includes an understanding of profitability by product type and every variation thereof.

The customer doesn’t pay you (enough)

Here are their stories from which you can draw conclusions and pick the best approach next time you’re dealing with firing a client. Because you operate a business, you call the shots. This decision-making applies to the clients you work with. If one of the parties does not hold up their end of the deal, it is time to evaluate other options. Or you could set up a meeting with the client to tell them over the phone.

It should be you, or a person with real authority who has been involved in the deal. But this is what it is, this is the new price, and I wanted you to know this as soon as possible, so you have a chance to make decisions and choose how to move forward with it.” One of the most impactful 80/20 tools we have is called Customer Line Simplification, or CLS.

However, if neither of these tactics works, realize that the situation is only temporarily sustainable and map out your exit strategy. Think about how you felt when you gave notice at your 9 to 5. Create and commit to an end date and then the day-to-day won’t feel as terrible. Problem clients believe that every project is “easy and quick” because they don’t understand the complexity of what you do.

When Should a Salesperson Fire a Customer? – Built In

When Should a Salesperson Fire a Customer?.

Posted: Tue, 12 Jul 2022 07:00:00 GMT [source]

But till that moment, you will have to bear up with the client. Though painstakingly enough, this will look a lot less traumatizing than firing a client mid-way. Therefore, grab some patience and sever the terms with the contract. Scale and Operational Efficiency Intelligence-driven, scalable insights for onboarding, adoption, retention, and revenue growth. Account Management Handle this critical component of the post sales customer journey.

Signs It’s Time To Fire A Bad Client & How To Do It

He wants the “hookup”, argues about cost, goes online to find cheaper prices to compare without looking at content, and doesn’t want to pay the fees assessed. He is an undesirable client and I told him I didn’t need his business because it costs me money and time. You don’t always want to let personal feelings get in the way of a deal, but that doesn’t mean putting up with a customer disrespecting you. For new businesses, the increase in customer acquisition cost and damage to retention rates from sticking with bad customers makes it more difficult to assess product-market fit, Salkin added.


However, the client could delay the process by continuously rejecting your ideas, recommendations, and deliverables. This article explains why you should end a client relationship, how to amend it, and how to terminate the partnership. This ebook shows you how to meet customers at each stage of their journey and create compelling content that converts. Information and links from this article are provided for your convenience only.

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To ensure that the remaining customers are serviced better than they were before, on-time, complete, and various quality metrics must be tracked and managed. Sales people, especially top performers, tend to be the first to jump ship when turbulence strikes a company. Therefore, retention bonuses for the best sales representatives and managers should be put in place. Members of the sales force who survive the rationalization process have a great responsibility. “It is actually immature to spend all the energy to satisfy someone who does not intend to be happy. In my 26 years of leading Pioneer Service, I’ve had the unfortunate but necessary task of firing exactly two customers.

Additionally, during for direct labor staff reductions, legal counsel input is critical to ensure compliance with federal, state and municipal labor retention laws. Especially when a workforce reduction involves unionized employees, certain protocols must be respected. There is no exact formula, but you will typically want to fire those customers who are unprofitable due to their order size, annual revenue spent, and the amount of hand-holding needed. It can be awkward having to repeatedly ask for money that is already owed to you, while trying to remain cordial. However, remembering these factors when handling late-paying clients can help make asking for money in a polite-yet-firm manner an easier process.

Every sales engagement should be a partnership. Not to mention struggling with the cash flow as a result. Although, in many cases, you can overcome this challenge, some clients remain bad payers.

Trust and integrity are the cornerstones of a good business relationship. Finding out a client has been dishonest with you is a quick road to that relationship’s demise. And any client who would try to pressure you into engaging in dishonest or unethical behavior needs to be set straight. The good reputation of your business must always be upheld. Unless these clients can be convinced that “honesty is the best policy,” you’ll be better off without them. Getting customers is hard enough, so you might think it’s nuts to suggest that you fire any of them.

When firing a customer, you should inform them why you chose to do so. For instance, you could explain that they no longer meet your yearly minimum turnover quota, or that their quote-conversion level was too low. There may be several reasons you feel reluctant to say goodbye to that troublesome customer. Maybe your business is not in a position to proactively rid yourself of a revenue source. Or perhaps you see the customer as having potential to grow into a very large account and you wish to ride out the early growing pains. What have you done with difficult customer relationships?


Be open and honest about why you are firing the customer. The transparency will help address the challenging situation. In other words, make no exceptions, because if you make exceptions, it casts a suspicious light on your motives, which is the last thing you need. People may not like it or want to hear it, but if you calmly reiterate what the issue is and why you’re making this decision, you are managing it as best you can.

The sales representative has to spend more time trying to fix this customer’s problems, which takes away from time they could be prospecting and selling to more valuable partners. And the customer success team has to work harder to try and renew them. This scenario often happens when you subcontract with other companies. The process you’ve been using to work together changes. And the new one results in spending more time and money to deliver the work. Founder of Kōvly Studio, Brittany Woitas, says life is too short to continue a bad client relationship.


Outline a clear exit or transition plan, identify the pending projects to complete, and carry out your commitment. Have a clear and thoughtful reason for ending the relationship. Confirm which deliverables the client still needs and which ones they want you to finish. Continue to work efficiently with the client on completing these projects. However, it is better to discontinue a relationship at the end of a contractinstead of cutting ties in the middle of it.

customer support

This way you preserve your reputation, know you did the right thing, and you get rid of a client that wasn’t right for you. Soon, you realize that the customers who are causing you grief are also costing you money. For all the time you’re spending trying to fix the unfixable, you could be pursuing your dream clients. Everyone has the occasional bad customer, yet it’s important to recognize when they’re costing your small business big. Your bad clients can actually end up costing you money. If they consistently pay late or haggle over fees, they inevitably end up interrupting your cash flow.

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