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Money can't be in two places at once

Andy Black

Help people. Get paid. Help more people.
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May 20, 2014
"Money can't be in two places at once."

I'll credit this line to Blaise Brosnan again, on a course I went to in 2009/10.

I remind myself of it when a potential new client agrees the fees to proceed and I send an invoice.

While the money is in their account, it's not in my account. And they're still a prospect and not a client yet.

It's sometimes easy to forget and count our eggs before they've hatched.
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Mar 25, 2014
Simple message, yet very important.

While the money is in their account, it's not in my account. And they're still a prospect and not a client yet.

This is key.

A former coworker hit me up for some web design after I posted on Facebook I'd do simple websites for friends for next to nothing - just pay for hosting and a small fee. Well, he took up that offer, and I offered to do it for him for $100 + the domain/hosting. So in total, it came out to be some ballpark number a little over $200. He needed a website for his clothing/lifestyle brand he was about to launch so I was happy to help out someone trying to make it on their own.

We talked a few times over the period of a week. Then I sent him the Paypal invoice. He couldn't pay for it some reason, had some problems. Few days went by. Still couldn't pay it, registered an account, talked to Paypal. Maybe a week goes by and finds out what the problem is. Then he is still having problems paying it, asks me to meet him about 45 minutes to accept a check. I can't, I'm busy that day. He tells me he is going to call me, and doesn't, etc. Things like that. Overall a hassle to work with, and I kind of new this going into it. Two more weeks of this nonsense happens so I brush it off and figure I don't want anything to do with this.

I wrote up a mini contract with my Paypal invoice clarifying expectations, work to be done, etc. That way to protect myself from getting taken advantage of. Because if I'm offering a service for a friend at a highly discounted price, there's two important things: 1) you have to be easy to work with, 2) nothing extremely complex or time consuming.

I'm guessing this contract scared him off so he didn't want to pay via Paypal and was wanting to do it via check/cash instead.

Then he was having a live event at a college and wanted me to register the domain names for him using my money because he didn't want anyone else stealing them as he was selling his goods for the first time. Ha.

He never paid his Paypal or signed the contract - so I never did anything in return. He was still a prospect and not a client.

So unless you are providing a sample or mock up to win new business, don't do free work for people or spend your own money until they have committed with theirs.

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