Getting paid over time is better than not at all, so consider offering payment plans to customers who are past due on their bills, writes Michelle Dunn, CEO of Michelle Dunn's Credit & Collections Association. When you speak with delinquent customers, start by asking for the full amount before agreeing to split the payment into installments, she writes. Then ask questions to get a better understanding of the situation and, once you have reached an agreement, formalize the commitment by getting your customer's signature on it.

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