Clients can be very intimidating at times. Being part of a startup sees me do a range of activities from Business Development to Project execution to Client servicing. While I am largely comfortable with the other aspects of my job, client servicing stands out as a thorn in my otherwise peaceful job.
The worst of the lot are, however, clients who dont even know their product very well but are out to market it. What is worse, however, is that their profile refuses them to even admit their ignorance.
A recent episode saw us presenting a full fledged plan to the client, assuming she was well aware of the product. A series of emphatic yeses saw us implementing the plan as per the scope of work defined and agreed upon. The creatives were approved and the project ready to be rolled out.
A final user acceptance testing assured us that we were on the right track. We were, however, sadly mistaken.
4 months into the project, the client’s seniors suddenly woke up one fine day and decided that the design, layout and the feel of the product was not upto the mark and wanted changes.The plans that we had shared initially seemed to make no sense to them and the client chipped in as well with her share of concerns over a product approved by her.
We soon relaized that neither did she have a sense of the product nor had she bothered to clear all grey areas with her seniors. This resulted in a product that was probably not what they wanted in the first place!!
All she seemed concerned about was a call that she had with her senior every tuesday, after which a string of panic calls would ensure that documents upon documents be sent with timelines, revised timelines and other details. Her limited knowledge of the e-mail service ensured that she just couldnt figure out where our mails disappeared resulting in us sending it all over again.
Thus started an entire cycle of redevelopment, taking up expensive time and resources and another round of client servicing which sometimes included a haughty exchange of words. Every call simply added more undue pressure and distaste. As such, over time I have only disgust for the client.
The project isnt over yet and so isnt the problem…Have a thought on how to handle such clients?…write in