Read Next

When's the last time someone gave you too much change?

I travel a lot.

Not all countries have the same standardization and cash controls as the United States or Western Europe. In most of the world, actually, everything is pretty ad hoc.

Part of this means, at least 5-10 times per year I'm having someone hand me the wrong amount of change or otherwise screwing up billing pricing.

Funny enough, no one ever hands me too much change. No one ever accidentally marks a bill as paid that isn't paid.

But the reverse happens. Often.

Get terms that require less thinking

If you're running a small company, freelancing, or contracting, you should set payment terms that minimize the amount of time you need to think. As you improve and the demand for you increases, you should consider making the terms more favorable even before raising your rates.

I've noticed this time and again -- clients, friends, and colleagues of mine who have more favorable payment terms sleep better at night. Sometimes, people with favorable terms don't even realize that they have terms at all. They just get paid upfront.

The biggest advantage is that you don't have to think. Staying on top of receivables and payment schedules is a headache that consumes a lot of brainpower without creating a lot of value.

Sometimes perhaps it's unavoidable, but you'll always pay at least a small mental price for taking less favorable terms. Offer more guarantees, invest in your relationships, build a great reputation, and do whatever you can and must to get terms where you get paid upfront to the largest extent possible, with very specific calendar dates for the rest. Anything less creates work and stress for you that doesn't lead you to creating more value for the client or customer.

Common questions --

Rendering New Theme...