Clients From Hell



I’ve been MIA fro this blog for a while – not because the Client ‘Gods’ are smiling down on me but simply because I’ve been handling way too much shit from them! The latest is this client going MIA for over two whole months – I’ve given him a call more than once and while he’s courteous on the call and says “I will reply to the email” [ which is the first design option that was sent to him and awaits feedback ], he never really gets back. Neither does he give a reason. He could simply tell me to fuck off but he doesn’t do that either.

Then there’s a client who’s very conveniently out of the country as soon as it’s time to pay up the balance. Bitch. Can’t be reached on the phone and pointedly refused to reply to emails. Called up her boss and he feigns ignorance regarding the whole deal. they were planning a country-wide launch and I could blog about their unprofessionalism but don’t want to shove a cudgel in their spokes without an outright yes or no from them.

Did have an exceptional client recently – photography – I did the work as a rush job, gave them an idea of what it would cost – it was a little over what I normally charge – to incorporate the rush job charges – and they didn’t say anything to the quote. I have finished the project and await payment in full. My gut seems to have no doubts about receiving the entire payment without a hitch – more so because it is an internationally well-recognized organization and a small screw up resulting in my blogging about them will screw their reputation.

Who needs lawyers when you have blogging.

Filed under: from HEAVEN, from HELL, , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

7 Responses

  1. Cody says:

    I don’t understand the last bit… you submitted a quote for a rush job, and they didn’t reply, so you went ahead and did the job anyway? That seems wrong to me.

    • Cody, they ‘said’ it was ok – nothing on email, no formal acknowledgement. I did get paid in full though. I wouldn’t have taken on the engagement if I didn’t have a fair sense of how it was going to play out. Sometimes my gut’s wrong but mostly it aint. Experience counts for something and some clients just won’t screw you over because they know your reputation and you know theirs.

  2. Sabahat M. says:

    What a great idea for a blog! I read ‘MIA’ and ‘I want something simple’ and couldn’t stop thinking of how similar my own experiences are. Also, I was about to post today’s hellish day with a client on my own blog, but they haven’t paid me yet, so I think I’ll wait. It’s not a polite post.

  3. Cate says:

    Are you working without signed contracts?

  4. The 1st web design job I had, while I was still in school for web developer, was for a Filipino woman (they can be tight-wads), who owns a high end furniture store in my home town. Being my 1st job, I quoted her a price at about half of what it should be. But it was fine for me, as I needed to get a portfolio built.

    Besides making the design, she had me take pictures of her furniture, which needed modifications in Photoshop to look right. I should have charged extra for that (now I do). So now I was making even less. And there was other content, copy and images, of which was supplied solely by me. I won’t go into detail.

    What broke the camel’s back, was when 2 years later, as she decided to finally finish her site (still not done), I didn’t get a payment for 9 weeks after I had billed her. She has to use someone else now, as I have told her. See the unfinished site here:

  5. JJ says:

    UGH, I hear you. I really don’t get these people that ask you do to work on a project and then DISAPPEAR and don’t reply to contact.

    I had an email today from a potential client whom I quoted work for about a week ago. I’ve been trying to follow up on whether I had won the work (branding job), but no one ever answers their phone. I leave messages, and they never get back. I email, I don’t receive a reply. Fine, I thought, perhaps they’ve gone with someone else (which is A-ok, but what happened to common courtesy of “thanks, have received, not going ahead). Instead, I’ve had Silence.

    Then I receive an email out of the blue saying: Ummm, you haven’t been in touch with us and we would like an update on our project. You promised to update us on a weekly basis and you haven’t, we are disappointed.

    Ummm, you haven’t ENGAGED ME formally, responded to ANY communication, not said a word about the quote, don’t answer your phone or emails… how the fuck am I supposed to know you want to go ahead exactly?

    Le sigh.

  6. Ceri says:

    I’m a graphic design student about to graduate, and I just got back from dealing with my first so-called business contact (it’s an internship for a “magazine” that’s actually only a website, and pretty much the ugliest, worst-coded website I’ve ever seen) dealing with a totally delusional client who ACTUALLY TRIES TO DESIGN GRAPHICS IN MICROSOFT WORD and who seems to have no idea of what a fair rate to charge is and as soon as I came home I googled “graphic design stupid clients” and your blog was one of the first thing to come up.
    I’m now going to go read every single entry and try to comfort myself with the knowledge that I’m not the only one.

    Seriously, how are these people able to be in business at all?

    Sucks about your situation. I really hope I don’t end up with any clients who skip out on the bill…but I probably will. Dishonesty and cheapskateness seem to be on the rise.

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