You’ve been talking to a prospective client about his or her writing needs. So far, everything sounds good. You know you can do the work and give the client what they want, but they haven’t made you an offer. Now what?
In this situation, you do have some options. You can back off and focus on the work you have in front of you right now and give the client some space and hope that when the time comes to hire someone that you will get nod.
You have another option, though, and that is to assert yourself and get the client to make a decision. Even if the answer is No, you have an answer, and in that instance you are free to move on and consider other opportunities. Discussions with clients can get to the point where having an answer either way is less frustrating than waiting for someone to just get on with it.
Giving a client a nudge can be a simple matter of asking if they need anything else from you to make a decision about the project. This is a good tactic if your discussions have been going on for some time and you don’t seem to be getting closer to starting work or finding out that the client has decided to hire someone else.
If you are feeling a bit more bold (or just plain frustrated), you can say something like, “I have some time available to start on this on [X] date, would you like me to go ahead and schedule you in?” Then the client has three choices, Yes, No, or start on [X] date instead. At least you have an answer and you haven’t reduced the likelihood of getting hired at all by saying something like, “Would you make up your mind already?”
What strategies have you used to get a client to make a hiring decision?