As an outside observer, it sounds like their business is not setup to effectively handle projects they would consider small in comparison to their ideally-sized projects. Sadly, few businesses exhibit the discipline to define when they should walk away from business.
In my work launching new businesses (or fixing businesses that have plateaued), one place I see entrepreneurs in every industry get stuck, frustrated, or misguided, is in attempting to apply old models to new business.
When something needs to be accomplished I would rather stay up late and get something done in one day rather than spend two days doing something. This is why I didn't fare well in an office setting. And now I know why.
We all want to build a sales pipeline. You know -- plant the marketing seeds, nurture them, and watch them bloom into lucrative clients six months, or a year, or five years from now. But what if you can't wait?
Being self-employed can be rewarding, but it's often challenging when you're starting out. To get a new business off the ground, you need customers, but customers aren't easily willing to put their trust in a newbie. It's a catch-22 -- and nobody wants to be the guinea pig.
Each time I approach new projects and venture out of my comfort zone, I have a renewed respect for the way the artisan works. Sometimes we need to win trust by taking on risk rather than finding a way to distribute it.
Having a proven strategic business planning and financial forecasting system will help you, not only save time and reduce stress, but also make the most out of your existing cash flow, opportunities and resources.