We talk a lot here at Freelance Writing Jobs about how to find work and how to treat clients at the beginning of your working relationship. How you behave at the end of the gig is just as important.
Sometimes your relationship with a client ends because you have decided that it’s time to move on. You may have found higher paying work elsewhere or you may have decided not to work with that client for personal reasons.
In other situations, the decision to end the working relationship is made by the client. They may not have any more work for you, or may need to stop handing out assignments due to economic reasons. It’s possible that the client may decide not to work with you any longer because they are not happy with your work.
Whether the decision to end the working relationship is yours or the client’s you have a choice about how you are going to behave. If there is any work outstanding that you have agreed to do, get it wrapped up. Prepare your final invoice and submit it.
If you are the one who has decided not to accept any further assignments and you feel comfortable doing so, offer to refer the client to another writer. Someone you know may be a great fit for the gig, even if it isn’t a good one for you anymore.
In a situation where the client has made the decision to end things, you can still behave with class. If the client is not pleased and you can’t work things out, you can tell him or her that you are sorry that you weren’t able to resolve the situation. The result may be the same, but there is no reason why you both can’t walk away with your dignity intact.
When the reason for the client ending your working relationship is due to economic reasons, tell him or her that you understand and that you are sorry that they are having a difficult time. If you would be interested in working with the client again when the situation changes, tell them that. You could also ask the client for referrals to other people who may be hiring.
How do you handle the end of a freelance writing gig?
Anne G. says
Most of the time, my jobs end because the site is complete or the company has run out of funding and no longer can afford to pay. Only once have I truly quit and that was because the site owner asked me to start formatting my articles with HTML and uploading them through his software saying it shouldn’t take more than a few seconds extra.
I completed a few using these new steps and it was doubling the amount of time because I now had to create the HTML, keywords, tags and descriptions. When I said I couldn’t do that extra work for the same pay, he balked and said I was being unreasonable and that it really wasn’t that much extra work. Because I was spending more work on his articles than on my other projects that paid better, I knew I had no choice but to finish the few from that batch and then quit.
I recently ended a gig because the client expected far too much for far too little $$$. When he contacted me about an upcoming project, I simply stated that “due to other commitments, I would no longer be able to provide editorial services” for his company and wished him good luck.
Tara M. Clapper says
I had this come up just recently as a result of the editor not explaining his expectations clearly. It was also my fault for not asking more questions. The last thing I said was something about resolution. He paid promptly two weeks later (terms as agreed) and I asked him if he’d be interested in considering an interview I was conducting–on spec. That takes the pressure off of everyone and if he is not interested, I can sell the interview elsewhere.