How to avoid being “THAT” client…
You may be “THAT” client who nobody wants to work with, or you’re never getting the results you want and I’m going to tell you why that could be. You could possibly be on a blacklist of “people to avoid.” We all have our quirks and faults, but sometimes even though we mean well, we end up being nightmare clients.
I’m a brand designer and web developer and I have a blacklist of people I refuse to work with and pass that information on to other designer friends so we can protect ourselves from the headache + nightmare that comes with said person.
How to avoid being that client:
- Trust your designer: I have some non-negotiables in my business and one of them is my clients trusting me and my judgment. If I suggest you should go with a certain web host, or avoid using a hideous font — I expect you to trust me because without trust our working relationship probably won’t get very far. So when you have hired someone to provide you with a service aka their creativity or expertise, let them exercise it and don’t go behind their back running polls about if you should do this or that because it’s insulting to the person who is investing their time in you.
- Don’t be a backseat driver: We all hate it when we’re driving and someone is telling us how to drive, or offering unsolicited opinions. For example, if you don’t have any design experience, stop offering advice or stomping all over your designers creative process because I promise 1) You are not being helpful 2) You are probably stressing them the fuck out
- Respect their boundaries: If they have set business hours or ask you to only connect via email, don’t blow up their personal messenger, call them without an appointment, or send emails at 2 a.m. on a Saturday and expect them to respond right away. You are not their only client, and not everyone works weekends, or has time for 3 calls a week. Have respect for their time and boundaries.
- Deliver your content on time: All projects have deadlines and timelines. If you keep changing your content, take weeks to respond or deliver your website content 6 months l ater— they will most likely move onto their next project and you will have to wait and not expect them to start on your shit the moment you’re back. It’s your responsibility to meet their deadlines. They are not your parent or babysitter.
- Don’t bargain or ask for a discount: We all have bills to pay — so if you want a high end website or brand, you better shell out the money. Asking someone to lower their rates for you is disrespectful. You get what you pay for. You don’t go into Target and ask them to give you payment plans — either you buy or go home. If your designer requires a 50% down you better respect it or go else where.
- Know what you want: If you’re unsure of what you want, get clear on your vision before wasting someone’s time. EVERYONE including myself hates the client who has no idea what direction their brand is going in, and who doesn’t know what they want. Hire someone to help you write your goals before you take the plunge and invest in services.
By being mindful of just a few of these suggestions — you may save yourself from a blacklist, or make your designers life easier. So before you send that email, or before you offer that unsolicited advice, make sure it’s warranted!
If you’re a designer and want me to add anything else, shoot me an email email@example.com
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LOL! I think I’ve been this client. I feel so horrible now!!!!!!!!
OMG! I wish this article was around when I hired a designer. Totally saving this for the future. I try not to be “that client” but admittedly I probably gave my designer a bunch of grief. Thanks for tips!