How To Get Rid of a Toxic Client

Jan 04, 2018

The Floyd Wickman Team blog by Mike Pallin

 

Define toxic however you like. You know it when you’ve got one. They are unreasonable, disrespectful and demoralizing. The problem is the tendency to blame yourself for their toxicity.

 

First, a disclaimer. If it’s a one-time thing with their behavior because of the stress and pressure of a move, or the situation they find themselves in, that’s forgivable. Maybe you know them outside of real estate and they are really nice people. Their attitude just took a turn for the worse over this deal. Everyone gets the benefit of the doubt once, maybe twice.

 

In that case, “Roll up your windows and hold your nose.” This too shall pass. Remember Floyd says, “Nothing lasts.” Get the deal closed. Thank them for their patience. And earmark part of the commission to do something really wonderful for yourself. A pamper day at the spa. A round at Pebble Beach. That cashmere sweater you’ve been eyeing. Something extravagant. You deserve it for putting up with them, and knowing what’s ahead when you get it closed and over, which makes it easier to soldier on.

 

That’s not the client we’re talking about. We’re talking about the heart-crushing, keep-you-up-late-at-night, hide-under-the-desk, suck-the-will-to-live-out-of-you type. If for some reason you feel compelled to work for them, or if it’s your mission in life to win them over from the dark side, stop yourself.

 

Floyd teaches us, “You can’t get them all. If you go on three appointments a week, there’s one you can’t get, and one you don't want, and you take the one that’s going to sell.”

 

So, here’s a dialogue for 2018, whenever you find yourself caught up in a lose-lose situation with a toxic client: “Thank you for working with me so far, but you folks need to find yourself a new real estate agent. I can’t help you.” Smile. Stop talking. Let it sink in. Send flowers.

 

Happy New Year!

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