What To Do with an Unprofessional Client

In a perfect freelancer world, all clients would have a professional demeanor and a positive attitude. Unfortunately, we don't live in that world. Luckily, as freelancers, we have a few tools to deal with painful client situations in this world. Here are some tips on what you can do when a client does something weird or even downright rude.

Communicate the Issue

Lady on Phone - Photo from Unsplash
Sure, it can be scary, especially you are thinking of all the possible negative reactions they may have to your decision. In the long run, however, you have to evaluate if you want to work with someone who respects neither you nor your time. Your first step is telling the client in a professional and calm manner why their actions or words upset you.

For example, during one particular deposit collection meeting a client asked me on a date. I have never been so shocked and disgusted. However, what I said was simply, "Let's keep this professional."

Against my better judgement I spent another month with this client, who then wanted to overhaul all the design work I completed for him. This is where the next step comes into play.

Recommend Another Business

After his requested overhaul, I said that I wouldn't be able to continue working on his project, citing time and resources as a factor. I then immediately suggested that he find another business to work with, stating that it may be a better fit. I thanked him for his time and when he asked for all his social media credentials, I noticed he had already found a large company to work with. 

This is safer for you because you have no idea how a particular client will react to conflict. It is better for this kind of client to work with a bigger business, as they have policies and procedures in place to better navigate these kinds of situations should they, God forbid, get out of hand.

Accept the Loss

No freelancer likes to lose clients; it's an incredibly sinking feeling. If this happens, don't stay in that place! Instead, get up and look at some of your best work to remind yourself that you're still learning. We're not here to be perfect and nobody else is, either. As freelancers, we chose this path because we wanted to follow our own rules, and there's nothing wrong with that. 

I hope these tips have been helpful to you! 

If you liked this article, please share it on any social network you like, and remember to credit us here at Atlantic Design. Happy freelancing!


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