I designed a web ad for a business.
Client: You put the wrong email address on the banner at the bottom. Please use this one.
He then sent me their company website’s URL, which isn’t an email address at all.
I checked. The email address was correct.
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I’m an IT freelancer with cerebral palsy. I repair
most things but don’t offer micro soldering as I find I’m too shaky for that. Most people understand the limitation.
Client: I’ve got a tablet that needs a new charging port.
I had a look - definitely required micro-soldering.
Me: I’m sorry, I don’t offer this service. But here are two other shops that I can personally recommend.
Client: You can’t do this? Then why do you even run IT repair at all?
Me: I’m not comfortable doing this work, sorry. I’ve sent other people to those other shops before and they’ve told me they do excellent work, though.
Client: You’re completely useless, you know that?
This client then found me on all my social media accounts and left one star reviews on everything and kept posting really horrible comments.
I tried to let it go, but he kept hassling me for my “incompetence.” That’s when I uploaded a copy of my medical history, and explained why I didn’t do micro-soldering. At this point people started pushing back against this guy. After a week, he cancelled most of his accounts, which gives me some small glimmer of hope for humanity.
I don’t know why he got so angry that I didn’t want to break his stuff.
A client hired me to film two events for her bluegrass society. When I finished the rough cut, she decided the videos weren’t “diverse enough” (they were bluegrass concerts, after all).
Her solution? She had me film her talking to, and hugging, some black people to cut into the video.
I work in corporate event production.
Me: Will you need content on the screen this afternoon?
Me: Okay great. So we’ll just run audio.
Client: Yep, just audio and the laptop.
Me: You mean, you need the laptop display on the screen?
Client; Yep. Just the audio.
Me: And the laptop on the screen?
Client: Yeah, I guess that makes sense.
Client: The computer isn’t working.
Me: The light’s off. It just hasn’t been turned on.
Client: No, it’s broken. We’re not allowed to use it.
I hit the power button, and the computer comes on.
Client: How could you POSSIBLY know that?
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How you position yourself is crucial to your career. Philip Morgan joins Bryce to discuss how freelancers – particular freelance developers – can find success by specializing.
Links from today’s show:
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I work as a illustrator and I’ve had fairly picky clients before but nothing on this level. The client asked for vector illustrations of microscopic cells for a book cover.
I presented him with an illustration.
Client: That’s okay, but can you make it more realistic?
I redrew the vector with more detail.
Client: More realistic, please.
More detail yet.
Client: Hmm… but I need it more realistic?
At this point I paid for a stock photo and traced over it, keeping it 90% the same but making sure it still looks like it’s been drawn.
Client: hmm. I want you to have creative freedom, but this is still not realistic though. What are you referencing? Are you using the photo? The other artist did this illustration that is almost exactly what I want, I just want it more realistic.
He then sends me the previous artist’s (gorgeous, in my opinion) illustration, which looked nothing like the reference material he’d already given me. I scheduled a Skype meeting to get on track.
During that meeting, I placed the illustration I’d done right beside the photo I’d used for reference to get a specific sense of what he meant by “more realistic.”
Client: Oh. Huh. I guess your drawing actually IS realistic! Wow, they actually look almost the same! I never actually zoomed in, or compared the two pictures. Well, you obviously know what you’re doing, just keep going and go crazy. Just keep it realistic.
Eventually I found out that he’d worked with THREE other artists before me, all who fired him for his nitpickiness.
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