Invoices going past due date without any financial commitment from your customer can be frustrating. It even hurts when your customer starts to play pranks on you. You’ve done your due diligence on the customer and have rated him as credit worthy, overtime he starts to default.
Delay in collection is an ordeal every small business owner must learn to deal with. Being able to bootstrap at this time is what makes the journey as an entrepreneur challenging but rewarding. Activate your sixth sense, use every possible tactics to recover your money in this situation.
Delayed payments have led to deteriorating business relationships, fights, lawsuits, confiscation of property, violence and other vices and inconveniences.
This is not a good position to be as your reputation could be marred in the process.These few tips could help put your acts together in your effort to get paid.
- Be Patient and Maintain a Positive Attitude – This is the first place to start, when you’re psychological and mentally drained, your energy level drops and mental articulation is impaired. Try to be optimistic as much as possible, keep a clear mind, and believe in your customer on more time.
- Speak to Those in Charge – Meet the decision makers of the business, write to those in charge formally requesting for your payments that have gone past due date, try to be polite yet firm as possible in your demands. When writing seems to be unsuccessful, Pay visits as well. Engaging your debtors physically make them take you seriously rather than sending mails or speaking over the phone. Be sure to strike a balance between phone calls and visitation.
- Offer Help in the Best Way Possible – Be flexible with your customer by creating avenue for negotiation, Seek for ways you can offer concessions on a case by case basis as all customers are unique. You can offer Installment payment options for customers who currently have cash flow issues but have the capacity to pay in the long run. It’s all about timing – let your customer know what you’re doing so they do not take you for granted.
- Seek Legal Help – This is a more effective route which comes with its own cost but it takes the mental strain of going after debtor. Before you take this route, consider the professional fees involved and the sum you’re trying to recover to know if its worth it. Engage the services of debt collection companies that would help you go after your trapped cash. This service attracts a fee, usually a percentage is charged on the recovered sum. Be sure to reach an agreement with the debt collector service before the recovery process commences.
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Chinedu is a portfolio risk manager and content writer. He believes desired results are born out of creative thinking.