One of the mistakes many start-up businesses make is taking every project or job, no matter what. I made it myself. It is very tempting to accept anything which comes along, but the new business owner needs to consider:
- Is it within our expertise?
- Will it be profitable?
- Have we the capacity to do it?
If the answer to any of those questions is “no”, then we should decline politely.
Sometimes even more experienced business people can get this wrong too, and accept work which cannot be delivered satisfactorily. That may lead to damage to reputations. Never be afraid to say no. Feel able to refer another business for the work if you think they will be able to do it. That will make more friends too.
What does not make for a good reputation is a business owner saying “I will get back to you with an estimate or a quote” and then not doing that because they do not fancy doing the job. That is a good way of losing friends and again damaging reputation.
Never leave a prospect hanging. They will think more of you if you decline and tell them why.