Dealing with a horrible client can be a real challenge, but particularly the WEB SITE CLIENT is very difficult because word-of-mouth can spread, and you wish to keep complaints about yourself off the internet and out of reach from local communities, where rumors can spread like wildfire. Anything to do with the web does require extra tact, so it’s important to think twice before complaining. Complaints could end up online, which could spell a world of trouble. Here are a few ways to deal with that horrible WEB SITE CLIENT and keep on target in terms of personal and professional goals this year, and beyond.
Keep Communication Verbal
Be sure not to put complaints in writing since the last thing you want is that client somehow publishing your email on his or her personal or professional blog or with the Better Business Bureau. Take notes on what you wish to say, spell those out, and then schedule a verbal communication, preferably a phone call since the client isn’t going to be tape recording it–and you get the powerful option of avoiding face-to-face contact, which removes pressure to back off the sensitive nature of the interchange: how to make him or her less horrible to deal with. When you schedule the conversation, be sure to explain, very professionally, why you wish to have the conversation in the first place: to discuss communication and outcomes around the topic of creating or updating their web site.
Put on A Polite but Firm Facade
Be very sensitive. Instead of being angry when you have the conversation, try to be sensitive and open, but still be firm. Tell him or her directly that you need more cooperation if you are going to be able to create the right web page for him or her. Here are some phrases to use during communciation, “it would be so helpful if…;” “what would really help, in terms of communication…;” “depending on email for communication makes the most sense…;” and “putting your concerns or demands into writing for me will make it easier…” Being clear about what you need–and being clear about the formatting–will help you to keep your cool. Also, you’ll appear to have the upper hand in the power exchange by being big enough to present your professional, yet sensitive side.
Keep the Relationship Pruned
Difficult relationships can spell trouble in life, and, in general, keeping them in perspective makes the most sense. Try to keep communication to a minimum, and keep it to writing, instead of trying to bend over backward to help. Remember, you are the business or service provider, and they are the customer or client. You get to call the shots about how often, and *how*, you are in relationship or contact. Keep things to the bare bones, and you will be less likely to lose your cool as well as your business due to frustration or not wanting to work, which can happen when all you see is difficult, or challenging, clients. Keeping strong and firm boundaries will spell success, and allow you to keep your sanity, along with your client list.
For more information, check out “Top 10 Best Online Web Design Schools and Degrees“.