5 Ways to Lose Clients and Alienate Prospects

How often have you found yourself thinking it’d be much easier to work if it wasn’t for clients? Answering the phone like a robot, or rolling your eyes at a complaint?  It is so easy to fall into the trap of unhelpful routine behaviors that actually limit your prospects.

The reality is that despite any unreasonableness you might be receiving from the people you deal with in business, there are very basic steps that you could take to avoid the majority of it. If you notice yourself doing any of the following, take a step back and try to introduce more positive alternatives.

1. Becoming a Robot

Instead: Be polite but not sterile

It’s important to ensure your conversations and emails can never be misconstrued as rude, but that doesn’t mean you need to be sterile. This is relevant to all aspects in your communications, from salutation to conclusion.

For example, I work with people who sign off their emails with ‘Sincere Regards’. How do you think that makes the recipient feel? Whilst it is a safe bet, it might not be the best signatory. But equally you would not want to appear over familiar. It is worth being conscious of how your communications will be interpreted by the recipient; be them verbal, written or in person.

2. Leaving Assumptions Unvoiced

Instead: Follow up meetings

It’s very simple. After a meeting, send the person you met with an email confirming the points of your discussion and your understanding of the actions to follow. It will now be in writing and no one can reinvent the truth. This simple action also shows you were listening and are interested in the project you are working on together.

3. Being Lazy, Procrastinating or Simply Not Caring

Instead: Be proactive, be interested and stay in touch

How often do you communicate with your active clients? Probably not regularly enough. Organising yourself and your team to make regular calls to check in on clients, even if there isn’t much to say, is a basic way to show you care. People like to feel special. It doesn’t take long to type an email to touch base with your contacts.

4. Forgetting to Stay Informed

Instead: Take pride and become an expert in your field

It’s important to stay on top of the industry that you profess to represent. By reading blogs like this you can very quickly stay informed on trends with design, development, marketing and much more. Knowing the major news and up-to-date developments mean you can not only maintain a reputation of expertise and knowledge but also become naturally able to incorporate interesting facts of the industry in conversation with clients and colleagues.

5. Neglecting to Build a Positive Business Culture

Instead: Introduce ways to show you care and are passionate

Simple actions such as organizing a morning tea, buying champagne for a hardworking colleague or even social networking and writing regular blog entries can help build upon the lively and positive energy within your business. Sharing these actions with the public via your website is an easy way to prove your business is made up of human beings who are passionate about what they do. These actions will naturally translate into every day behaviors, such as positive conversations and meeting tough problems with a sense of humor and can-do attitude.

Introduce these alternatives to your own behaviors when dealing with clients and colleagues. Quash any robotic behaviors and ban procrastination: Learn how to avoid losing clients and alienating your prospects today!



Popular search terms for this article:

losing clients

Andrew Barnes is a young entrepreneur and director of a growing website and design company, GO1. With a penchant for all things digital, Andrew is constantly seeking ways to improve his business and ensuring the office is free from robots.


  1. Tony B on the 4th December

    Real simple but really effective, great sharp and to the point article.

  2. Dean Ethridge on the 4th December

    Hey Loved the post! Great article and congrats on Reaching the Top 50! I will be back to visit often

  3. Meg on the 7th December

    Thanks Dean and Tony!
    We think simple is often the best way to approach things. As cliche as it sounds, the Keep It Simple Stupid methodology is really important- especially if you find yourself falling into bad habits.

  4. Matthias Hasenpflug on the 7th December

    In the every day work you often loose track of the simple things. Thanks for reminding us!

  5. Amon Huang on the 17th August

    when customers pushing too much on jobs, i get frustrated, well still should be polite and caring, step up from small business to professionals lol.

  6. Andy on the 23rd August

    always adjust yourself to fight against with your bad motion, like that!

  7. Daniel on the 8th November

    I agree with Meg. If you keep things simple and communicate clearly with your clients you should be OK. Also managing expectations is one one of the most critical aspects of customer relations & retention in my opinion.

Add a Comment