Client: Rush job! We need this as quickly as possible, must be out today!
5:55PM: I upload the finished work. My workday generally finishes at 6:00PM
Client: You know you shouldn’t just rush things so you can get out the door on time.
Me: Here is our roadmap for your SEO campaign. It includes milestones, deliverables, and desired outcomes.
Client: It’s just not detailed enough, I need detail, a few dot points won’t do.
Me: Well the roadmap does show all of the process and milestones along with descriptions for each step.
Client: Simple dot-points won’t do. I need you to copy what my last SEO specialist did.
Client then sent an excel sheet with short descriptions of each task. It was basically all dot points, except it included steps like this:
Step 1: Put username into WordPress.
Step 2: Put password into WordPress.
Client: You see? I understood what she was doing because I had a level of detail you aren’t providing me.
I then go and write a thousand words off the top of my head about each step in the process, how we do it and what it means for her and the campaign.
Client: Thanks, that is better but still not the level detail a person like me needs. Can you take (old SEO manager)’s list and just outline what is included with you and what isn’t?
Me: Sure I can do that, but honestly there is a lot of detail in there that are not necessary and realistically don’t have any benefit to the campaign or your business. It's adding time to my task list, and honestly, to yours.
Client: Oh, I'm not going to read it. I just want that level of detail in the future in case I do.
I have been working on a children’s book with an author who is not a very good writer. It’s about a kid who loves his toothbrush.
Client: Could you make the toothbrush floppy or strange for a kid to like?
Me: I’m pretty sure it’d be strange for any kid to really like a toothbrush.
Client: I want it to be floppy.
Me: We estimate the project to take about 5-6 months at best
Client: I don't think I can pay for that much development time, can it be done in two, max three?
Me: You're already asking me to be the lead developer on the frontend and backend, working with students with no experience. The project is very complicated, I'm not sure if it's possible.
Client: That reminds me, we also have no project managers available for this project. Could you take that on as well?
I work in marketing for a number of hospitals across the US. Here are some of my favorite client edits:
Client: Please note that the words ‘sick’ and ‘ill’ are prohibited per our hospital brand guidelines. If necessary you may refer to "Patients being treated for complex medical conditions."
Client: Please don't say patients with cancer are "sick." That sounds awfully negative.
And my favorite:
Client: Please don’t say the patient "fought cancer." It makes it sound like we think cancer is cool or badass.
Client: Please make this form full width.
Me: Done. Is this better?
Client: Yes, thank you. Can you also add another field to the form?
Me: Done. Anything else?
Client: Can you make this form look like this other form?
He was asking me to change the form I’d just edited back to match what it was originally.
Me: Okay, done.
Client: Perfect thank you. Oh and can you make the button a little more pink? To stand out.
Me: But the button is the same pink used all over your site?
Client: I want this one to be a different pink.
Me: (Ignores client and doesn’t make the change) OK, that’s done for you.
Client: That’s perfect.
I just stumbled on this job offer on eLance.
Client: I am looking for the best writer for an eBook based on an amazing true story (involves history, drama and biography) as the main plotline, but the content itself and the content of the chapters would have to be creatively made up in a thrilling & interesting way. The writer has to be a fluent in: English language (must have perfect Grammar and spelling), internet searching, researching & writing skills. Previous work portfolio will be asked, writer with self published books are preferred. A total of 70,000 words are needed, payment is $560 per 70,000 words, This project requires all regular materials required in an Ebook (except a cover picture) Included materials such as: table of content, footnotes, quote refrence etc. (which will not be counted in the word count) Each chapter will be submitted along the way. The text will be double-checked for copy-writing issues- each book must 100% original. Deadline is 30 days from the start of the project.
"Write my entire book for $560 in 30 days." Sure. Sounds good.
I’m a DJ who mainly plays in nightclubs and bars but from time to time I will play weddings. Most of the time I try to avoid them since they are very time consuming and require a lot of prep work.
A friend of mine asked if I DJ for her friend’s wedding in three months. I accepted and asked my friend to give the client my contact info to get in touch with me ASAP.
Two months went by. I asked my friend if she passed along the information several times during that period, and even tried to reach out myself. No response. Then, a really exciting offer came up for the same night – because I hadn’t signed any contract or even spoken to the bride, I decided to go with it. I told my friend and asked her to pass this along. She apologized that the bride hadn’t bothered to reach out to me in all that time.
A week before the wedding, the bride added me on Facebook and sent me a message.
Client: Hey. I’m sorry for responding so late. The wedding is a week away and I thought I should contact you so we could work out the details.
Me: Hi… I thought that [my friend] told you that I cannot play at your wedding. I already accepted another job offer. I hope you find someone, but this isn’t going to work for me.
Two days later my response was still unread.
Me: Hey. Can you please confirm that you got my message?
Saturday: I’m playing my club gig and having a good time. When I finished I checked my phone and had several messages from the bride asking where I was. They started as questions, turned to insults, and then accusations that I destroyed her special day and that she would sue me.