A Russian Martial Arts instructor was recently talking to me about the question asked by actor Robert Di Niro in the movie ‘Taxi Driver’. “Are you talking to me?”

By the time one gets to that part of a confrontation, you know darn well who they are talking to so at best it’s a retorical question, at worst if gives the other side more time to prepare a defense or launch at attach. “Don’t waste your time,” he recommends. “You get away, call for help or make a move.”

If a client says they aren’t going to pay you, or you have the second broken promise (which is telling you the same thing), get to it:

  • Run away:  Small balance and a customer you don’t care to salvage? Abandon or assign to a third party.
  • Call for help: Maybe someone else in your organization to make a further attempt, could be sales or an executive with contacts in their organization.
  • Take immediate action via shipments on hold, reporting to credit agencies, action in small claims or legal assignment

Some people say there are no stupid questions. Don’t kid yourself.