How to ditch a client???


I need some advice on a polite way to tell a client that I no longer wish to work with them...

I've done a few jobs for this client now, and each and every time I deal with him he drives me completely up the wall. He comes across as a bit of a control freak - wanting to go over every minute detail over and over again just in case I didn't understand it the first 3 times - and the work that I'm doing for him is the simplest stuff in the world that a first year design student could do in their sleep. I've been a graphic designer for over 16 years; I don't need to be reminded 3 times that I need to add a cutter guide and make sure the artwork has a bleed... He also keeps trying to shoe-horn additional work into each contract, like "can you just design a new logo while you're doing that car sticker??", simply because he doesn't want to have to pay extra for it. :icon_mad:

***and calm*** Right, rant over. Back to the question at hand :icon_biggrin:

I hate to turn down any work - even basic low-paying work like this, but I'm starting to feel like it's more agro then it's worth. Any suggestions as to how to let him go without coming right out and telling him that I hate working with someone who thinks I don't know what I'm doing???

Much appreciated
Put your prices up, simple, if he doesn't like it he can go elsewhere. If he stays then you are at least being compensated for it financially.
It's always difficult. I've a few clients like this myself.

You could always tell him that you're moving to a different workflow and that you'd no longer be able to do his kind of work or indeed have the time to do it.

Either that or just send an email mentioning that your rates have gone up by double as you're spending too much time on smaller time-consuming jobs.

You'd also be best to recommend a different designer who you can say is better suited to this kind of work so that he's not stranded. Although, the new designer may have to be forewarned (and be a tough cookie) to have their terms and conditions carefully worded and passed on before taking him on.

It's sometimes better for a designer to get a new client so that they can start afresh and set the ground rules.

Look forward to some of the replies to see if there are any other suggestions. :thumb:
I'd probably go with the higher prices line... but I'd also tell him that I do know my job and that's why he's paying me. You can use that as a justification to put your prices up.
I have one client who is really fussy (can we move that .5mm to the left...and now try it 1% bigger... etc) and I time myself on each bit of the job so if they quibble I can justify it!
Just declare yourself too busy to take on new jobs right now - they'll go somewhere else in the end. Failing that, caller ID and stony silence.
Hi SWATTdesgin, Difficult clients can be a real headache for sure, I have had a few myself over the years but from the sounds of it, this guys gives you a lot of repeat business and whilst it may be small fry and the guy can be completely anoying, I would just try to work through it. You may not need his business at this point but it could be essential for your business cash flow in the future, and turning away work could be detremental in the long run. If you are to busy to work for this guy consider subcontracting the work to someone more junior, let them deal with the stress and you still keep the client on your books in the future.
Just declare yourself too busy to take on new jobs right now - they'll go somewhere else in the end. Failing that, caller ID and stony silence.
Fair enough the first part but if I have learnt anything in this game then work from recommendations / word-of-mouth generates some of the best clients. Sure this one is a dick but not everyone he knows can be one too; well maybe they can but it's unlikely :)

Good rep is hard to get but bad reputation flies around at a scary rate of knotts. I have one awfully demanding guy who is very fussy "one point size up, move to the right 0.00003% of a millimetre" and I could have gladly told him to go poke it time and time again BUT he comes back regularly AND he has recommended me to 5 people, 3 of whom are now regulars. Sometimes it is best to grit your teeth and take it. And if it really is too much to do that then I think price increase and/or unavailable do the trick.
I don't really see an issue. Charge for the time involved (all the time) and quote on that basis. Clients are diverse and varied - that's part of the fun. Just need to manage the project / process / client.