Are you an independent practitioner? In the US, 1/3rd of the workforce are independents. An amazing proportion to my way of thinking.
One of the advantages -- and at the same time, one of the hazards -- is that you get to fire your boss; and, you even get to select your boss.
This essay gives a few pointers for the newbie independents -- know when to hold'em; know when to fold'em. You know you've got a bad client when:
- They try to set up the deal at 10pm at night or a weekend... unless you want to work 24x7
- They say it's an easy job they can do themselves.. unless you want to be micromanaged
- They want to talk about themselves instead of the job task... unless you want to be their counselor
- They say they've tried to get the job done with many others, and they all failed.. so might you!
- Rude, insensitive behavior.. unless you like the bad-ass type
- Those that ask for a miracle, or an unlimited commitment.. unless you give up your independence
One suggestion is to beef up the contract; guard your intellectual property rights (something I really pay attention to) and get a non-refundable down-payment. That one has been a sorting parameter for me. Don't forget the non-poaching clause: your client shouldn't have the freedom to hire your staff.
What's the right wording: "We're not a good fit", or "This job is not a good fit for my skills" (I use that one a lot)
And, if they really insist you take the job, add on a premium for your anticipated trouble!
Read in the library at Square Peg Consulting about these books I've written
Buy them at any online book retailer!
Read my contribution to the Flashblog