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When It’s Time To Fire A Client, with Erik J. Olson


Episode #1289

Sometimes you need to fire a client. But technically you’re not firing them instead you’re resigning the account. In this episode, Erik shares when you should resign the account.

July 27, 2022

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Episode Transcript

Erik J. Olson (00:01):

When it’s time to fire a client, what is happening? This is Erik J. Olson. Yeah. You know, sometimes you need to fire a client now, technically you’re not firing them. Although a lot of times agencies, freelancers, independent contractors, they’ll use that phrase. I’m firing the client. You actually don’t fire the client. You’re resigning the account. It’s like an employee, an employee, doesn’t fire a company, right? An employee resigns. It’s the same. When you are providing services as an agency or some sort of service provider to a client, you don’t fire them, technically you resign. So the question is when does it make sense to resign and account? Well, it makes sense. Certainly when the values of the client does not align with your values. Now that is a blanket statement, which applies really to life. And whenever two people, two entities are kind of dealing with each other.

Erik J. Olson (01:06):

The, the value proposition of each has to align. And when they don’t there’s problems. Now, why would the values of your client and your company not align? Well, it could be for different reasons. And a lot of times, frankly, it goes way back to the beginning of the relationship. Expectations were not set properly. The client may think you’re supposed to do one thing. And you think you’re supposed to do another thing. But once you get moving with that client, especially like if you started to provide a service and then you changed your business and you don’t wanna provide the same level of service or the same service at all to that client, but you don’t tell them that’s a problem. Now you may actually tell them. And, and they say, okay, everything’s fine. We’ll just, we’ll, we’ll go with your new system, Erik. But they don’t really mean it.

Erik J. Olson (01:57):

And they just fall back to the, so whatever, there’s a misalignment of values, it’s a problem. Now here’s another one that has happened a couple of times here at Array Digital. We want to continuously propel our clients, businesses and firms, their, their firms forward. So we want our clients to grow we’re in the business of growing firms. And when we find that a client either doesn’t have that same desire or they’ve lost it for whatever reason and they can’t get it back, they just want to coast. That’s not a good alignment of goals for us. So our goal here is to grow our agency to a hundred million dollars. And frankly, we wanna be surrounded by people who want to grow their businesses as well. And so when we have a client that just stops wanting to grow and they just wanna kind of like take it easy and take the foot off the gas pedal, that’s not a fit for us.

Erik J. Olson (02:59):

We wanna work with clients that want to grow, that want to hire more employees that wanna help more people. And as a business, if you’re twice as big, you can help twice as many people, or you can help the same amount of people, but you can help them twice as much, right? So you need to think about like, what’s the purpose of growth. And, and now I’m a little bit on a tangent here, but this has to do with why you would align with a client or not. If your purpose in life as a company is to grow companies and your client’s purpose is no longer that that’s a good time to cut bait. So something to think about, especially when you start to have like issues with the client, there’s a misalignment there. And at that point, it’s time probably to have the talk. Now, if or when you resign an account, you should do it respectfully. You should give them notice. Certainly you don’t want to resign the account. And then, you know, the next day they’re on their own. You need to give ’em time to process, to find a replacement for you and to transition. So do it respectfully, do it professionally and you know, try to make the best of a bad situation. But those are a couple of times that you may want to resign an account.

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About The Hosts


  • Erik J. Olson is an award-winning digital marketer & entrepreneur. The Founder & CEO of Array Digital, he is also the host of the Journey to $100 Million Flash Briefing and daily podcast, and the organizer of the Marketers Anonymous monthly meetups.

  • Kevin Daisey is an award-winning digital marketer & entrepreneur. He started his first company when he was just 23, and is the Founder & CMO of Array Digital. Kevin is the also the co-host of the Journey to $100 Million Flash Briefing and daily podcast, and the co-organizer of the Marketers Anonymous monthly meetups.

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Website Design, Online Advertising, SEO, Social Media & Digital Marketing.
© Array Digital LLC