If a client rings you at 10pm on a Friday night would you answer the phone?
If you did, then I would consider your relationship with the client to be one of prostitution, if:
- The client calls out of hours frequently.
- The client is not in a personal relationship with you.
- Even though you are having fun with your friends or at home reading a good book you still feel compelled to answer the phone.
- You don’t turn your business phone off after hours just incase he does ring.
I don’t know of any business owner who has not, at some stage, allowed a business relationship to extend the bounds of what is considered normal operations.
Sometimes we never want to say “no” to our clients either because we seek their praise or scared that they might drop us for a competitor.
This is unhealthy and leads to all kinds of issues including the breaking down of the wall that separates your personal life from your business life.
Once you set a precedent with the client that its okay to ring you out of hours to talk business or deal with an issue it becomes almost impossible to change and the client will end up abusing it.
I know its hard to say “no” to a client but if you deliver a great service to the client and set the “rules of engagement” early on then the relationship will remain healthy with mutual respect. If you don’t then resentment will creep-in which will start to impact on the service you are paid to deliver.
If the client wishes for something more – than maybe its better for you and your family that the client goes elsewhere.
NOTE: The word “prostitution” can also be used metaphorically to mean debasing oneself or working towards an unworthy cause or “selling out”. In this sense, “prostituting oneself” or “whoring oneself” the services or acts performed are typically not sexual – source