Casper Reiff

The mind of Casper Reiff

I never missed a bill that were sent to my business. Not that this makes me better than everyone, but at least I am concerned about how other people perceive my business.

Not paying your bills makes you seem unprofessional

Published 28.12.2016

I had some clients that forgot to pay their bills, repeadedly. This, however, does not make me angry, it just makes me wonder why they are so unprofessional.

It's really hard for me to understand, how some business owners can miss out on a payment - I assume most businesses have automated systems to control their economy today, but appearently it's still possible to overlook a bill.

I sometimes wonder, whether they do it on purpose - perhaps to keep the money in the bank for as long time as possible to gather ad much interest rates from the bank as possible. Or perhaps they just sit there, hoping for me to forget I ever sent the bill, as if I don't have automated systems to control my business economy.

I don't know if this is a specific issue for the web related businesses, but I've had the experience multiple times with various companies - and I just don't get it.

To me you seem so unprofessional

No matter the reason for the late (or forgotten) payment, I cannot help myself but to look at you as unprofessional. How can you expect anyone to take your business serious, if you can't even pay your partners what you owe them?

I know this might sound like an angry message towards clients from hell - but it's really not, I genuinely want to understand this matter.

And also, do you feel the same about late or forgotten payments?

Please join the debate on reddit

Best reply on reddit

I got this comment from reddit user Areanndee, summerizing the subject so well, that I had to share it here on the website. Join the reddit debate by clicking the link above.

- Being fiscally disorganized
- Emergencies
- "Smarter than" mentality
- Lack of integrity

If there is a legit emergency I'll probably work through the issue with the client provided they keep communicating with me and I don't have to chase them. Only one emergency per client, tho.

"Smarter than" is the genius who read that waiting to pay until the last possible moment (late but not shut off) makes you money. No it doesn't, it makes you a jerk. Or these are the people who always have to get a little something extra by skirting the edges of the agreement or renegotiating after the work is done. Again, jerks. These egomaniacs aren't automatically shut down but I'll charge a premium and put penalties in the agreement for late payments. I may take collateral. Their tactics to save themselves money comes at my expense so I make sure to pass those expenses back to them with a stress markup.

Clients who are fiscally irrepressible or lack ethics are a ticking bomb. They will leave you holding the bag. They will put themselves first and loudly denounce you for a perceived slight (that was a result of their actions). Never, ever do business with them.

I always take a nonrefundable deposit. I always have the agreement in writing, signed. I also include a "communications clause" that says that I'll make multiple attempts to contact you and if you don't respond within a period of time your job will be bumped to the bottom of the stack or canceled entirely at my discretion. People in a hurry seem to be terrible communicators who want to hold you to the timeline while failing to arm you for success: no really, that info that I said I needed, I actually needed and I'm stuck until you deliver. If you won't make it important enough despite your urgency, I can't!