Are you finding that your web based projects struggle to get off the ground, sluggishly roll to completion or cause budgets to crumple? What is happening, who’s fault is it and how do you fix it? Well, I hate to say it but chances are you have innocently played a starring role in this disaster story.
Yes, you need to take some responsibility. In fact, this lack of responsibility is the problem. Even if you hired someone that is inefficient, inept or overcharges it was you that hired them and it is you that should be overseeing what is happening and replacing them with a reputable professional.
Let’s assume that you have hired the correct professional for the job; there are still a few things that fall on you. If you have heard a deep “sigh” while discussing your project chances are you have made one or more of the following errors.
4 things clients say that cause web professional’s frustration:
- “I don’t care. Whatever you think looks good.” – Very seldom does this work. Just because someone can’t or hasn’t taken the time to be able to describe what they want doesn’t mean they won’t know it isn’t “it” when they see it. It is your vision, dream or idea and the person you hire is not a mind reader. Do yourself, and the person doing the work, a favor and take the time to plan, sketch or research for a similar project and have at least some vague idea as to colors, details, needs and also what you do not want.
- “I’ll know it when I see it.” – If this is true, then you need to spend some time looking for it instead of expecting it to be miraculously presented to you. That would be somewhat like winning the lottery. I suggest you look for examples and make note of where they were found or even better take a screenshot. Not every example is going to have all the bells and whistles so you will need more than one.
- “I will get you the information, pictures, etc. as soon as I can.” – If you don’t, you are the delay. Even if you are paying to have content created there will be details that only you know. When you hold up the project you are potentially interfering with the professionals schedule. Remember they get paid when they complete projects and when you hire them they plan accordingly. They now are not getting the final payment from you but could also possibly have put off other projects in order to service you. If you expect outstanding on-time service please keep to your end of the schedule.
- “I started it but I just need you to fix it” – Often it can take much longer to correct a problem than to do it from scratch. Especially if there are lost logins, errant profiles or coding problems. Issues can arise when you haven’t been honest about the situation and you force your mistakes or those of someone you hired previously, upon the person you hired and expect them to sort it out quickly. The price of doing it the cheap way could become very expensive.
It is your responsibility as the client to provide all the details you can to help the process. You would never ask someone to build you a house without giving lots of input on every little detail. It is understood up front that any change you make will cost you money because of the time it will take the contractors to make the fix. Likewise, you wouldn’t expect a repairman to fix something in the house without giving him the key to the door or telling him what was wrong. Why then would you assume it will be different when you hire someone for a web based project?
Time is money and every change you ask for will take time. Even if you are not being charged by the hour the fixed price was arrived at by estimating the duration of the project. If you delay a project, change your mind a dozen times or try to change the scale of the project without considering cost chances are you will not be in the best graces with your service provider.
When this happens you may find yourself paying considerably more next time around (nuisance fee) or having to find someone else to do the job. The bottom line is if you want to stay on schedule, on budget and on good terms with your chosen professional then hold yourself accountable.