I have been working for a company for about 3 years, mainly dealing with one client on daily basis. We had a great relationship, and I know the client insisted that he only wants to deal with me. However after my original employer encountered some financial difficulties I was let go. Since then I have formed my own company (6 months later) and I'm looking for clients. I know what my old client is not entirely happy with the service he is getting now and might be looking. Should I contact him and offer him my services? How should the message sound in order to not scare him off?

  • Reread your previous employment contract and look up anything regarding non-competes. – dfundako Nov 21 '16 at 14:57
  • Legally I'm allowed to do that. – vaxlt Nov 21 '16 at 14:58
  • Just contact them and tell them you have formed a consulting company. If you have person contact phone may work better than email. – paparazzo Nov 21 '16 at 15:01
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    Why do you require the internet's approval to run your business? It's a simple issue. If there some legal clause stopping you from competing with your former employer? If not, it's the client's choice who their service provider should be. This might strain the relationship with your old boss, but again, it's your decision to push that line or not. Not mine, or some other stranger's on this site. – AndreiROM Nov 21 '16 at 15:12
  • Business is business, best practice is not to push for work. Approach in an almost social way and mention that you have started your own business. Then leave it to the client to come to you if they want to (this gives you a strong negotiating position. I did zero advertising when I started, just sat at home and waited until my former place fell to bits, took about two weeks, and clients were knocking on my door in desperation. – Kilisi Nov 21 '16 at 21:36

That depends on whether or not you are contractually obligated to honor a non-compete clause with your old employer.

If not, just approach the client like you would any other. If your company is to survive, you'll need to become really good at approaching potential clients so you may as well get some practice in.

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