Did you ever see that old Seinfeld episode with the famous “it’s not you it’s me” breakup scene? Well, if you haven’t, take a look for yourself (http://youtu.be/U8TnhNxKNlU). But what does that have to do with web design.
You see, recently I worked on a web design project for a client that was an absolute dream. She was very understanding, responsive and receptive to the suggestions we brought to the table in terms of how to redesign her web site and make the most out of her budget. She also liked how in our proposed web design, we where not trying to just copy the latest and greatest trends but how we had listened to her needs and addressed those concerns specifically. The meeting finished well and we have moved smoothly into the next phase of the project. but it made me wonder, what do you you do when the designer/client relationship is not so, dare I say, perfect?
Of course we’ve all probably had a “nightmare” client or two in the past and perhaps we may not have handled the situation an ideal fashion. Which prompted the question, How could I improve in this area?
So I did some research and came across an nice Q& A with “The Doctor”. That’s right. AIGA has a super cool question and answer called Ask Doctor Design. I reasoned that surely a doctor must have a cure for what ails you. And the Dr. does not disappoint. As a matter of fact, one antidote is to use the “it’s not you, it’s me” method. Problem solved.
Here’s a few things The Dr. prescribes (read the full article here; http://www.aiga.org/ask-doctor-design)
1.) Reforming clients is hard. Firing clients is easy.
– when firing a client you could say:
2) I’ve realized that we are probably not the right resource for you.
3) If the client owes you money at the time of the (“it’s not you its me”) conversation, you may never see it.
4) The client may have no idea that you aren’t as happy as they are, and may volunteer to mend their ways.