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dougm

Should you ever reject a client?

dougm
Doug Mathlin 9 minute read

It’s a fact that when most people start out in business their target client is pretty much ‘anyone’.

As a new mortgage broker, anyone looking for a loan will be tolerated and provided with the highest level of service available. Why? Because we need to get our business off the ground and start building a recurring income.

We have determined that business success will be achieved by writing the largest number of loans that can be settled from business inception until retirement.

The great news is that after a broker’s business achieves a certain level of success, they realise not everyone should or can be their client. Paul, a broker from Sydney, summed it up by saying: “Some people have needs we cannot meet and some want services we do not offer.” The great thing about having a successful business is you can choose who you will do business with and who you won’t.

Anyone who has been a broker for more than a year will recall a client they would not deal with if they had their time again. Aside from the obvious (fraudsters and the likes), there are other people you will meet who should never become your client or referrer.

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A Sydney-based broker once told me a lawyer-prospect of his stated he didn’t have time to “read and sign forms”. The broker told him it was a prerequisite for obtaining the loan and he might like to try going to a bank branch to see if they could look after his needs instead.

Prospects that give you the run-around should also be reconsidered – or referred on to a competitor!  By the run-around I mean, after having an initial conversation, they don’t return your calls, fail to turn up to appointments or can’t find the documents you require, or just seem evasive when you’re doing your best to try and assist them. In this case, your time would be better spent on clients who really want to work with you.

Sometimes we find clients who just don’t ‘fit’ with us and would be better served by someone else (the Sydney Swans colloquially call this the ‘no dickheads’ policy). Time is precious and we should aim to enjoy working in our business as much as possible, so if you have the choice, you should exercise your right to work with the people you want to work with.

So how do you professionally reject prospects? Sometimes we need to suck it up and work with people who are less appealing to us than others. If a major referrer sends us a lead that might be more difficult than others, we may need to consider the referral relationship before making rash decisions.

There are no points gained by telling a prospect to ‘go forth and multiply’. Any feelings of satisfaction for the deliverer are short-lived and remember, you are the professional – and unprofessional behavior is not one of your strengths.

The best way to reject a client is to offer them a realistic alternative. Be clear and honest as to why another provider would be better suited to them. If you can explain your services and the way you can assist, prospects should understand your decision.

So will there be any fallout from rejecting a prospect or client? The answer to that is very probably yes! Any client you reject is unlikely to praise you or your business. You will never write ‘that loan’ and will most likely not create an advocate in that prospect. But on the upside, you now have time to focus on the prospects you really do want.

 

Should you ever reject a client?
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Doug Mathlin

Doug Mathlin

Doug is a Consultant to the Finance Industry and founder of FrontRunner Consulting Group. He has worked in various roles in finance since 1995 when he was appointed National Training Manager at Aussie Home Loans. Since then he has worked with BT Financial Group as National Staff Development Manager before founding FrontRunner. He has written many programs focusing on the successful operation of Finance businesses. FrontRunner is a Sales Training and Sales Management Consulting Company specialising in the development of Finance businesses.Doug works with many Top Producers as a coach and advisor. His areas of speciality include Business Planning, Marketing Strategies, Analysing the strengths and weaknesses within businesses, Scripting, Sales Presentations, Lead Generation, Client Service excellence, CRM, Recruitment Strategies and Understanding Buyer Behaviour. He has produced Leadership Development programmes for business owners and senior personnel. FrontRunner also specialises in building effective teams. FrontRunner programmes provide a network for like-minded professionals to share best practices and to learn from others. These professionals typically want to grow their businesses by providing better service to clients and improving the systems that drive that service.

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