I do a fair amount of networking with other small business owners in my area - basically if one of my clients requires a service I don't provide, I will refer them to someone I know and trust and they will do the same for me.
Recently I placed an ad on a professionals website and was contacted by another professional from this site who has a home based business in the same area as me. As it happened I was urgently trying to source someone with their skills for one of my larger monthly clients, we discussed it and my client was happy with the quote received - all good.
The person then came to site to carry out the required services and that very evening I get an email from them stating that my client has requested that they do some additional work for him and requested certain information from me. Mind you no professional courtesy in the way of "Do you mind" etc and damned if I even got a Thank you for the initial referral. Whether the client approached this person or visa versa I will never really know, the point is my gut tells me that this person is opportunistic and will try their level best to secure this client as their own -and I am guessing by whatever means possible. :|
My relationship with my client is very professional, I provide a service and he pays me monthly - as many business owners he is more interested in saving a buck than building long lasting relationships and should this person approach him with a cheaper rate it will be game over for me.
My philosophy in life has always been that you get more right with honey than you do with vinegar, yet the more time I spend around people the more inclined I am to become cynical. It's a dog eat dog world out there I know, the question is how low am I prepared to go - I don't believe in screwing someone else over to make an extra buck, I guess I will never be rich, but at least I will sleep at night.
The really sad part about this is that I could have passed on regular business to this person that would far exceed what they will gain from this one client of mine.
Ah well,.... lesson learnt and rant over.