I’d Love to Work with You, but I Can’t Afford It

When clients say that they can't afford to work with you, what is really going on?“I’d really love to work with you, but I don’t have the money”

How often do you hear that from prospective clients? As it’s one of the most common excuses that people use when they aren’t ready to move forward, almost every entrepreneur will hear it at one time or another. And when you hear it from your prospective clients, do you believe them?

I never do. That’s right, no matter what story they give me, even if they believe it 100%, I never buy into it. I may choose not to move forward with them, which I will explain why below, however I never believe this story, and neither should you.


Well for starters, if you buy into their story of not being able to afford it, then either you will close a lot less business, or you may find yourself lowering your prices. Do you really want your income to be dictated by other people?

And the other reason, and the most important reason, is that if something is really important to someone, they can and WILL find or create the money. Think about it, when there was something you really wanted, even if it was a stretch, did you not find a way to make it happen?

So when someone tells me they can’t afford it, they may truly be speaking from a place of integrity that they really feel that can’t afford it, but I will always look much deeper to see what is really going on with them, that is disguising itself as a money challenge.


1. The client truly doesn’t see the benefit of working with you.

You can usually tell if this is the case if they are telling you that they want to work with you “but I just invested in, such and such” or “I have to pay for xxx”.

It’s obvious that they do have the ability to create the money for things they truly want, as they see and understand the benefit. So you may have not conveyed what you do in a way that they truly understand or want it.

2. The client is afraid

When a person is about to make a big change, they can freak out. Or if they are in a situation where they need to borrow money, or don’t have the immediate cash flow coming in, and they know that your service is essential to increase the cash flow, but they need the cash flow to invest with you, it can feel like a catch-22. So in these instances, you need to work this through with them, and help them come up with a solution.

3. The client doesn’t feel the urgency to solve their problem. Or perhaps doesn’t even want to solve the problem.

The client may be intrigued at what you do, and genuinely “want” to do invest/purchase. BUT if they are only interested in it, they don’t have an urgency to address the problem that you solve. So it’s not likely they will invest. It’s always a good idea to probe at the beginning of the enrollment conversation just how much urgency they have. I like to find that out and get their commitment to solving the problem before I ever make an offer.

4. The client is confused

A confused mind never buys. So it could very well be that your client has a lot of unasked and unanswered questions. So dig deeper and find out what it is they need to know, and provide them with the answers they need.


While these are only a few examples of what could really be going on with the client, there can be many other factors that could be going on in their life, in your enrollment conversations, how you have positioned yourself, and in your own mindset. That is why it is so important to never believe someone when they tell you they don’t have the money, but rather to really look at what’s going on, so that you can either support the client to move forward with you, or to learn what you will do differently next time.

That client may truly NOT be a fit for you and THAT is OK. But what you don’t want to happen is to let that conversation affect your confidence, your pricing, your belief system and your overall income.

Nafissa Shireen

Nafissa Shireen is an award winning Master Coach, International Speaker and Business Mentor She has a gift for empowering and propelling people to their highest potential.

With 25 years' experience leading 6-figure to 9-figure companies, she strategically partners with entrepreneurs to help them focus on sustainable & scalable business growth, so they can create a highly profitable and luxurious business and life.

Passionate about helping women earn what they are worth and build their wealth, so that they can realize all of their dreams and desires. She brings together her vast business knowledge with the deep inner work needed to help entrepreneurs identify blocks, step out of fear and overwhelm, raise their wealth consciousness, and move forward towards their goals with measurable, tangible results.

She is a featured Expert and regular contributing author for Today’s Innovative Woman Magazine, and is profiled in Canada’s 2014/2015 Distinctive Women Magazine

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