When you run your own recruitment or search agency it can be tempting to try to keep everybody happy.

Never say no to business and put up with let’s say… less than grateful clients.

It’s all money, right?

Well, no.

The truth is, you are losing money, gaining stress, and most likely your confidence is taking a hit as you fail to profit from the wrong clients.

I can almost hear you thinking “But if we did that, we’d have fewer clients and not enough revenue.”

There’s a real paradox here though and it’s interesting.  At points in my business journey when I’ve been brave enough to relinquish bad clients and focussed on attracting great clients, it happened.

The space was there to attract great relationships and give them the service they deserved. I wasn’t turning myself inside out trying to get great results for clients who didn’t appreciate me or the efforts of the team.

I once relinquished a huge client we had been working with for years because of the way they started treating our consultants.

Whilst I had to take a deep breath and put on my big girl pants to do it, the feeling after was amazing, and that confidence and control I felt was a real motivator to getting new business, And guess what?  We replaced their revenue in no time.

My mindset was strong, not defeated anymore and along came more of the right business.

The sad fact is the more you put up with these types of clients, the more of that business you attract, and the fewer candidates you will have interested in your jobs.


If you want to be a business with a portfolio of highly sort after clients here are 3 tips to help you.

  • First is mindset. Know that you absolutely deserve to be working with great people. Life’s too short to be disrespected and taken advantage of.
  • Do a client “Rekkie”. Who are the clients you love and who are on your hit list to farewell?
  • Identify who you would love to be working with and for every great client, you gain, relinquish a less favourable client to make space for the next great client.

Too often we end up running our business focussed on pleasing others.

Please yourself first and the rest will follow.

If you have great clients that are a delight to help, you will love your work, you will be happier, healthier, feel more confident and ultimately make more money and just generally enjoy yourself more.


Here are some ideas to get you started on who those clients might be….

  • They are in your niche of XYZ
  • You know people are keen to work there
  • They treat your partnership as equal
  • They want to see you succeed (not try to screw you over)
  • They pay on time and don’t quibble over the rate
  • They return calls and give you the feedback you need
  • They understand you are the expert and are happy to take your advice
  • They provide clear and realistic briefs
  • Whatever else is important to YOU and your team.

There is a saying, “The standard you look past is the standard you accept.”

If you accept working with less-than-desirable clients, that is your benchmark, and the frustration and continual disappointment that comes with this work will have you feeling defeated and drained.

Decide who is worthy of your amazing service and accept nothing less.

Even if you are not ready to fire any clients just yet, I hope this blog gives you some pause for thought and the confidence to do so when the time is right.

If all your clients are great already, congratulations that is a great place to be!



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