Marketing MascotYou have really established your business and your products and/or services are top notch and well developed. You aren’t the only person who understands how well you are doing. Other people seem to have a good sense of your capabilities as well. Whether you own a product- or service-based business, requests for freebies can be a touchy subject.

Handling the situation delicately

The last thing that you want to do is insult other people. However, on the other hand, it is not fair for other people to assume that you are going to give everything away for free. Afterall, how are you supposed to support yourself and your family if you give everything away at every opportunity? It is unfair if it isn’t mutual. However, if you and the other person (whether that person is a friend or a family member) happen to have the kind of relationship where you help each other out, that is something else. On the other hand, if one of you takes and the other gives, it won’t work because there may be a lot of resentment that gets built up and eventually erupts and ruins your relationship. Often, people don’t realize that they are taking advantage and using a personal relationship to gain in other ways is really unfair.

The sensitivity of asking for free things

If your business sells products or it sells services is irrelevant when it comes to people wanting handouts. If you earn your living from selling products and/or services, it is wrong for anyone to take advantage of that. If you, as the business owner, want to give the person something and you insist that they do not pay you, that is your choice. The fact that the person even made the request may make you feel a few things. First of all, it may make you feel as though the other person has no idea about what you do and how valuable it is. If they did understand the value of what you do, they would understand that that it is not fair to ask you to give it away. Also, their asking for something for free might make you feel as though they don’t respect your time, your talent, your expertise and anything else that is connected with your business. Although all of these points are true and they may strike a cord with you, it doesn’t necessarily follow that they intentionally set out to hurt you or to be disrespectul to you in any way. It is entirely possible that they didn’t have any idea how it translated to you. Also, it is very possible that they have no idea how much you earn everytime someone hires you to do what you do so well. It is not a bad idea to gently let them know the truth about that.

Just say no

It is important for you to understand the balance of when it is okay to comply with a request from one of your friends or relatives and when you need to dig your heels in and say no. If someone asks you something small that will take you a very short amount of time, it is probably okay to comply and give them the information that they are looking for. On the other hand, if you get a request to help them and it takes you hours and hours to complete the task, that is something else. As a business person, you will find that there are many situations in which bartering works well. If you have or can do something that the other person needs and they have something or can do something that you need, you may want to consider exchanging products and/or services. In that situation, nobody is taking advantage of anyone else. You both will hopefully get what you need and want and everyone will be happy in the end.

Remember to set the proper boundaries

It is very important for you and your business to have the ability to set boundaries correctly. Open communication is very important and you will have a much healthier, more comfortable relationship with the other person if you really talk to each other. You may be surprised at how well your feelings are received by the other person if you really tell them how you feel and what you need. Sometimes, you may want to help the other person out and sometimes, it gives you a good feeling to do something nice for someone else just because it is the right thing to do. It is called being a human being.


It is understandable that you don’t want other people to take advantage of you. On the other hand, if a person asks you to help them and it is easy enough to do, it may make you feel really good to do it. You need to treat it on a case-by-case basis and just see how it goes. In any case, if you decide that you are going to give the other person what they need, you also need to make sure that you get what you need. The last thing that you should do is to allow yourself to feel used. It isn’t worth it and you will become resentful very quickly in that situation. If you see that that is happening, you should do your best to nip it in the bud.

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