Should I accept this contract?
<p><em>There will come a point in your life as freelancers and self-employed person where you face a dilemma: should I accept this contract or not? You may ask yourself this question because you may not have enough time, or the project does not seem very interesting to you. Let's take a closer look at some tips to help you decide. Remember that you are your own boss. It's up to you to decide what you want to work on!</em></p> <h3><strong>Why is it so difficult to say no?</strong></h3> <p>Before we get to the heart of the matter, let's take a moment to understand why<a href="https://www.momenteo.com/blog/how-to-say-no-once-and-for-all"> it's so hard to say no</a>. First, freelancers and self-employed workers are responsible for finding work. At first, it can be difficult to find contracts and the amount of work isn't always steady. Therefore, entrepreneurs are always at risk of falling into a slow season and tend to accept everything that comes for fear of running out of money.</p> <p>Second, it is not in our nature to say no. We do not like to disappoint or appear selfish. This is especially true with women. We tend to put the needs of others in front of our own. How then can we decide whether we should accept a new contract or not? </p> <h3><strong>First step: Am I interested in the project?</strong></h3> <p>The first question you should ask yourself when a potential client contacts you about a new project is: am I interested in the project? We can also add to this: does the contract respect my values? When you decided to become self-employed, you probably wanted to have the opportunity to choose your projects and your clients. Don't forget that.</p> <p>So, if you feel that something is wrong or that the project does not respect your values, you should take this as a wake-up call. The contract will not make you happy and will be a source of stress. Listen to your instincts, they are right the vast majority of the time. </p> <h3><strong>Second step: Do I have time?</strong></h3> <p>The second question you should ask yourself when a new contract comes your way is: Do I have time? It may be that it is a very interesting project, but it is not the right time for you. Before you answer, take a look at your to-do list and estimate how many hours you have available. Is it possible to postpone some work or work a little more for a while – not endlessly, don't forget to respect your limits!</p> <p>If you feel that you will regret it if you accept the contract, it would be in your best interest to say to. You simply need to say that you have other projects at the moment and that you are not available, even though, the project seemed very interesting. This will avoid two situations: First, it will allow you to take days off as everyone needs to take breaks from work, even the self-employed. Second, you will avoid handing in work that is not your best because you ran out of time.</p> <h3><strong>Third step: Can I afford to decline this project?</strong></h3> <p>Unexpected events happen frequently. For example, we only have to think of the pandemic that has turned some of our lives upside down for several months. Currently, you may be in a slightly more precarious situation, and you may have to make choices. If that is your case, here is a third question to ask: Can I afford to decline this project?</p> <p>Maybe it's because the contract is not very interesting, or you need more money to pay urgent bills. In short, you may have to accept projects even if you have little time available or it is not exactly your cup of tea. The important thing here is that there are temporary solutions. So, when things get better, you can rely on the first two questions in this article to decide whether you should accept or decline a new contract.</p> <h3><strong>Some tips to decline a project like a pro</strong></h3> <p>Never forget that you are the boss. You have the right to accept or decline any contract available to you. If you decide not to go ahead with a project, here are some tips <a href="https://www.momenteo.com/blog/declining-a-project-why-and-how">to decline like a pro</a> so that it doesn't harm your professional reputation and credibility.</p> <p><strong>Don't wait to provide an answer</strong></p> <p>If you know that you are going to decline a contract, do not wait. Respond to the client as soon as possible. Then, they will have time to find someone else and you can move on.</p> <p><strong>Clearly say no</strong></p> <p>In other words, be clear. Do not beat around the bush – get straight to the point. You don't need to explain in several paragraphs why you are not accepting the contract, although a sentence or two would be appreciated. It can be something like 'thank you for thinking of me for this project. Unfortunately, at this time, my schedule does not allow me to take on any new contracts'.</p> <p><strong>Propose a solution</strong></p> <p>If possible, you can suggest a solution to your client. You could recommend another professional or say that you can take on part of the contract while you complete another.</p> <p>In conclusion, it is never easy to say no to a project, but if you do not feel up to it or simply do not have the time, it is more reasonable to decline. How many times have you regretted saying yes? In short, listen to your inner voice then remain professional and courteous regardless of your decision.</p>