When To Turn Down a Project

Are you constantly putting out fires, 因为你和不符合你品牌文化的人做生意?

A core distinction of (the SEO giant) Moz’s TAGFEE is that “we do not try to be all things to all people.” That is also a core value of our corporate culture. 知道什么时候拒绝一个项目是一个企业可以学习的最好的课程之一.

When To Turn Down a Project

知道什么时候拒绝一个项目不是在匆忙中发生的. 它发生在定义公司简介(或企业文化)的每一个细节的时候.

Step 1 – Define your Corporate Culture

The leaders of your organization need to establish:

  • what makes your company what it is
  • who you are as a brand
  • who your clientele will be
  • what kind of character and personalities will they have
  • what kind of budgets they should have
  • what the perfect project will look like
  • 什么样的结果才能使贵公司不受指责


没有建立组织的企业文化, 你不会去寻找合适的客户, 这样那些讨厌的恶作剧者就会华尔兹地走进你的家门, right along with the good clients.

Here at 2C, we call it, LITMUS. It is the verbal expression of our corporate culture. 我们相信,要想成为一家真正的公司,最重要的一点就是对自己诚实. 充分了解自己,有助于我们以诚实和创造力服务他人. 它也指导我们接受或拒绝新项目的过程.

Step 2 – Test every client & every project against your company profile.

If you read our LITMUS,你会注意到我们已经定义了我们是谁,以及我们的客户是什么样子.

每个星期,我们的团队都要通过2C LITMUS测试,看看我们是否 are what we say we are.


企业文化不会因为你写了东西而产生. 你必须不断地用自己的价值观来测试自己和客户. Ruts form, when the questions are not asked freshly.

Step 3 – Don’t be Swayed by Emotion


I can affirm to you, that if you turn down that business honestly, forth-rightly, and professionally, you will not have a problem. How can I make such a claim?

当我几十年前创办这家公司的时候,我必须熟悉公司的运作. I got a lot of experience from some rookie mistakes. And one thing that I learned, is that a majority of the people you will quote, are just shopping around. They don’t care who does it as long as it is cheapest. Seriously.

We tend to think more highly of ourselves than we should. That is bondage. 一旦你明白这不是针对你个人,你就可以自由地为你的公司做出好的选择.

Now that you know that…use a sieve!

‘Cheapest’ equals:

  • those who don’t play well with others
  • those who won’t value your expertise
  • those who need their hands held at all times (24/7)
  • those who have no time management
  • disrespectful
  • disloyal
  • distrustful
  • entitled

Step 4 – Let Them Down Respectfully



  • someone rubs you the wrong way
  • their business sounds creepy or ‘too good to be true’
  • they are going to choose according to price, not value
  • 他们建议你和多个董事会成员一起工作(太多厨师了)
  • 他们甚至还没有准备好开始一个项目,想要利用你来解决这个问题


If you hear any red flags in the first conversation, don’t disregard them. 红色信号意味着你将痛苦,而不是快乐.

Several Ways to Turn down a project


Unless that’s true. If so, 是那种把真正的大客户送到另一家经过审查的公司的组织, is fabulous. Generous, right?


Too small a budget, I mean. 在这种情况下,在你的第一次谈话中就提出预算应该能够避免这种情况. Honestly 给他们一个像他们这样的项目可能的成本范围这样,他们不用说也会知道你不适合这个职位. These prospects generally self-eliminate.


You are never, ever, going to change a person’s character. 不要做那种为了改变客户而和他们约会的公司,这样你就可以和他们结婚. It doesn’t work in business, anymore than in dating. 如果你的性格缺陷很明显,你可以随意提出来.

在我们早期的时候,我们被卖黄片和色情片的人攻击过好几次. Also, obvious fraud, scams, etc. That does not align with the values of our company. We let those prospects know, up front, 我们不会为与我们价值观不一致的公司工作. (That is a good way to word it.)


Then, give them the general pre-fabbed email response. 这些都是穷途末路的前景,永远都不适合,即使他们作为一家公司成长起来.

我们告诉他们,他们不适合我们公司. 你是在为公司服务,而不是在浪费他们(或你自己)的时间.

不管你是否让他们去一家经过审查的外部公司寻求服务,这都取决于你内心的声音. In our case, 我们经常派他们去研究一个DIY内容管理平台, like WordPress, or DIY eCommerce shopping carts. In a lot of those cases, that is what they really need. 他们很感激我们切入正题,把他们引向正确的方向.

In Conclusion

Depending on the people involved, 拒绝一个项目可以为你的公司带来更多的尊重(有时也会带来更多的机会)!

最近,一位市场总监就一个项目找到我们. It really sounded like an exciting opportunity. All was well, until we met the COO. 在我们见面的时候,她傲慢无礼. 此外,她浑身上下都散发着权利的气息.

My Director of Development and I shot each other the “this sure isn’t a LITMUS experience” look. While we shook hands, saying our good byes, 我们知道一封措辞得体的电子邮件是这个过程的下一步. 我用了一个周末的时间回复,不确定我是否会收到一篇长篇大论的文章. 相反,就像很多次一样,我收到了非常好的回复.

“当我第一次联系你时,我非常感谢你的快速反应, and your time in meeting with you last week. It’s often difficult to not bid a project in this market, 所以我很欣赏你的沉着,恭敬地拒绝和我们一起竞标. That says a lot about your company. We wish you the best!”

Money isn’t everything. In fact, money is not much, in the scheme of things. You certainly cannot buy respect or time with it.

成为那种喜欢经营金钱买不到的商品的公司. You will find, that it always leads to a profit!