It’s flu season...and the flu happens...SO do Nightmare Clients.
I tend to take my health for granted - I RARELY get sick, eat well (*most* of the time), workout (just started training for a marathon!), and overall have been lucky. But sometimes I end up under the weather, with a weird pain (hello recent back pain, NO FUN!), or you know, need a good teeth floss.
Knowing that I have health insurance and a doctor definitely gives me a sense of relief during my bedridden days. What if I didn’t have any protection in place? Of course I could go to an ER but no doubt the bill would end up being way more. I see insurance (and healthy lifestyle) as a foundational layer in protecting ME!
It’s something I can control - because what I can’t control is pink eye. Which I ended up with 2x last summer!
BUSINESS IS THE SAME. There are ways to put foundational layers in place to protect your business when pink eye (aka that bad client) comes knocking - you can’t control it, but it WILL happen. As a creative entrepreneur, it’s not IF this will happen to you, but WHEN.
So what can help? Having a 1:1 client agreement in place.
As a lawyer that works with online biz owners, and as the friend of several entrepreneurs who didn't always have a contract in place, I can tell you that you will NEVER regret having a 1:1 client agreement, but you will absolutely regret it if you don't have it and later need it (which you 100% WILL at some point).
I once had a friend that agreed to do some client work for a "friend/ acquaintance." They had chatted about the terms over email and agreed on how things would go. Well, let me tell you - it didn't end well. The "acquaintance" refused to pay the full amount and my friend was out about $5K. Of course when I heard the story the first question I had was, "Did you have a contract in place?" Well no....
While a signed client agreement is not a guarantee that things will go right, it is a guarantee that when things go wrong you have a leg to stand on.
If you are running a service-based business with clients - this is THE MOST important piece to have in place to protect your biz health!