Different people need different things; your ability to recognize what they need early enough in the relationship, would save you from a lot of heartache.
When you identify their need, then you decide whether you are able or willing to meet that need or not. If you are not willing and able to, it’s of no use going further in that relationship.
On the other hand, if you are finding it difficult to identify their need after several meetings, it’s a red flag.
It is not all about money, your time and emotions are valuable resources too; stop wasting them on projects that are doomed for failure.
A wise businessman makes smart decisions on all his investments, he would only invest in something that has profit. Even when he is contributing to charity, he still won’t waste his resources; he will only invest in charity organizations that are actually meeting needs.