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When is a Good Time to Quit a Cleaning Client?

When is a good time to quit a cleaning client? It’s a tough call when you have to make the decision. A good time to quit is when your gut instinct or intuition kicks in and makes you want to end the contract. 

We Ask a House Cleaner business advice for house cleaners and maids. 

Angela Brown, The House Cleaning Guru says more questions are part of finding a good time to quit. Don’t just quit a cleaning client or stop working for a client. It’s a business decision that needs attention.

Today’s sponsors are Savvy Cleaner Training, My Cleaning Connection, and HouseCleaning360.com

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Hey there, I’m Angela Brown, and this is Ask a House Cleaner. This is a show where you get to ask a house cleaning question, and I get to help you find an answer.

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Question: When is a Good Time to Quit a Cleaning Client?

Good Time to Quit, Woman Having SurgeryThis comes from a house cleaner who says, “I’ve been in house cleaning for many years. And I have this particular client that I despise and I would like to quit. But I can’t find a good time to quit because she keeps having all this drama and problems in her life.”

So, she goes on to explain that she was going to quit the client, but then the lady went in for surgery. She said, “I didn’t want to quit right before she went into surgery because she was going to need my help.” 

And then, she was going to quit after the lady got better. She’s been with the lady for a long period of time. And then the lady’s husband got sick, so she needed 24 care to come in the house. That was overwhelming to them. She needed the house cleaner to make sure that the new caregiver was cleaned up after. And so, it wasn’t a good time to quit then.

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Answer: There’s Never a Good Time to Quit

Good Time to Quit, Nurse Taking Mans Blood PressureThen, the lady lost her job. But she still wanted the house cleaner to come while she was out searching for a new job. Because now there are more requirements at home, and it wasn’t a good time to fire the client.

So, the house cleaner wants to quit, but she can’t find a good time. “When is a good time to quit?”

So, it’s a funny question, and the answer depends on your answer to this question:

What is Making You Want to Quit?

Good Time to Quit, Woman ThinkingThere’s something about what’s going on that is creating a loyalty. There is something that makes you want to stay and be her housekeeper.

And so, I would actually look at both sides of that. Why do you want to stay and why do you want to go?

Because when we find new house cleaning business, we want to keep these customers for a long period of time. We want to count on their money so that we can pay our own bills. Why is it that you want to fire the client?

Are They Problematic Customers?

Good Time to Quit, Woman Sweeping Dirty Kitchen FloorAre they a problematic customer? Or have they always been high maintenance? And so, is this bothering you? Is this what’s making you look for a good time to quit?

It is possible the customer is too comfortable and taking advantage. Is she’s always late on her payments? Because that’s a little bit of a different story. I don’t have all the information for this particular answer. 

Can You Keep the Customer Instead of Replace Them? 

Good Time to Quit, House Cleaner Thinking With TabletBecause if you can keep a customer instead of replacing them, that’s going to save you a whole lot of time.

You won’t have to do a new initial walkthrough. It’s going to save you running flyers, or whatever it is you do to get new business.

And so instead of reinventing the wheel and creating a whole new customer, you already have one. Can you make it work?

Can You Manage Your Feelings?

Good Time to Quit, Woman Pulling Her Hair OutI have customers right now that I despise, and we’re still a good fit for each other.

I’m able to manage my despising them, and they’re able to manage whatever it is about me that bothers them.

And so, you don’t have to love all your customers. No-one ever said that, and there might be customers that are difficult to deal with.

Guess what? I have customers that are difficult to deal with, and I know that. I actually have a hit list of customers that right now, if they do a series of other things, then I will replace them. But right now, this is manageable.

Do You Need to Fix the Problem?

Good Time to Quit, Older Man Rocking Sunglasses BoomboxAnd I always ask myself this question, why do I want to leave? What is it that’s making me want to leave? Is it something that I can fix?

A lot of times it might be the customer. Sure, they are a good reason to find a good time to quit. But I don’t want to fix any customers. And I don’t want to change their lives. I don’t want to change their personalities, and I don’t want to change who they are.

That would be a colossal undertaking that I’m not licensed for. And so, when I see these people I’m like “Whoa, that’s a series of odd behaviors, and if it works for them, awesome. It does not work for me, and so I’m going to keep to myself over here and I’m going to do the job I am paid to do. I’m going to collect my money, and I’m going to go home.”

And that works for me because then I can pay my bills.

People are not Disposable

Good Time to Quit, Delete ButtonNow there are, believe it or not, house cleaners that quit all the time. They keep quitting on their customers for whatever reason. And they can’t figure out why they’re not surviving in business.

So, the society we live in, and social media has trained us to toss people.  We get tired of someone so we delete them. Delete, block, remove.

What is that? We don’t live in a disposable society, people are not disposable. You don’t just throw them away because you got bored with them, or because you don’t like them for some reason.

Unconditional Love

Good Time to Quit, Angry Young Woman Throwing ChairNow, if you have a child, there’s what’s called unconditional love. As your child goes through pre-teen and teenage years, they pull stunts and shenanigans.  

As a parent, if they were not your kid, you would delete and block them. You’re like “Ugh no, I’m not tolerating this kind of behavior,” right?

But because they are your children, you love for them is unconditional. And so, you figure out a way to make it work. They’re attached to you in every way. They are your blood relatives, so you give them a free pass. 

Pick Your Battles Rather Than Find a Good Time to Quit

Now, I’m not saying give your customers a free pass, but why not?

If there’s something that’s disturbing but it’s manageable, can you let it slide?  

Is it something that you can manage for the time you are there, and then let it go when you walk out the door? 

Survival Tool – Self Talk

Good Time to Quit, Woman Mourning In Front of Urn and CandlesI use this as a survival tool in this business. Now there are days I’ve gone to customers houses and I have to talk to myself before going in.

 I’m like “Okay. No matter what happens today, we’re at a particular point in time where this lady has had a tragedy in her life. This is an annual reoccurring event. She’s going to be in the worst mood of her life today, I know this for a fact based on her previous history. When I arrive at this woman’s house today, she gets a free pass on everything. It doesn’t matter what she says or what she complains about. It doesn’t matter how angry she gets or if she swears at me, or throws things at me. Today she gets a free pass because I know, from history, this is not a good period of the year for her. This is not good. So today I’m going in, suck it up Angela, you can do this, and she gets a free pass.”

When Is a Good Time to Quit? 

Good Time to Quit, Cleaning SuppliesSo, my suggestion to you would be, when is a good time to fire a client? Quit already, and if you haven’t quit already there’s most likely a reason why.

So, I would check your loyalties, why are you still there? And why do you need to go?

Because in the answer of one of those two things will be the answer that you’re looking for.

Alrighty. That’s my two cents for today, and until we meet again leave the world a cleaner place than when you found it. 

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Resources For This Episode

Dealing with Difficult Customers – http://amzn.to/2GOh7zm

Mass Persuasion Method: Activate the 8 Psychological Switches That Make People Open Their Hearts, Minds and Wallets for You – http://amzn.to/2FI5mta

Exactly What to Say: The Magic Words for Influence and Impact – http://amzn.to/2FKSPVA

Principles: Life and Work – http://amzn.to/2FKNPAh

Magic Words: The Science and Secrets Behind Seven Words That Motivate, Engage, and Influence – http://amzn.to/2FJ2k7U

Methods of Persuasion: How to Use Psychology to Influence Human Behavior – http://amzn.to/2EiM6oX

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