Dealing with clients in freelancing career is one of most important fact for every freelancer. As a freelancer you must have adequate knowledge about how to manage, how to behave and how to satisfy a potential client. Before starting details let’s know a few words about client.
– What do you mean by client?
Client are those who provide us work and gives us a bunch of instruction and change their mind in several times! You should also call them “GIGS”. First term ‘provide work’ means they are the owner/buyer of work and give you regular basis work and fulfill their requirements. In this way they also open an way to earn money by work for them.
Second term, ‘Give a bunch of instruction’ refer, they will provide you a list of tasks(called requirements) and some sort of instruction how to fulfill their demands. I’m not saying all clients do that so!
– Understand the Freelancing Clients:
Generally we can see, there are 2 types of clients available in freelancing world. Some clients are really good and they are fully concern about their requirements and they know what they need and how to instruct their worker/contractors to achieve project goal. This type of clients are called decent clients and they are really a good one, who can improve your working skill and motivate your freelancing career.
On another side, some clients are really “unaware/frustrated” about their requirements and project goal. Most of the case they work as third party. That means, they pick a job from another client and hire another freelancer to accomplish that job in low rate.
In that case, they change their mind several times in project session and try to experiment their ideas through you and with your valuable time. Such type of clients really bad and just stay out from them. They will make your life hell!
I’m not trying to disappoint you or hurt any client. Client have right to change their minds and working plans. But as a freelancer you should never forget about your time value. Some clients really insist you to do their changes free of costs! That’s really pathetic and unprofessional attitude. If you are facing issue like this, then you must notify your client immediately and asked him to pay for your extra working hours. Believe me, It’s not illegal. Some freelancer think that, if he/she ask payment for their extra work then client will be angry with them and revoke their jobs!
If you want to be a true professional then never consider with payment. Because, when you doing any work for your clients, then you invest your talent, powers and valuable instruments like Laptop/printer/mobile etc. So, never underestimate your resources. As well as you should keep in mind that, you will never ask any thing to your client in unprofessional way. Be polite while you demand something form client. Like when you want to increase your hourly rate then you can ask your client – “would you like to increase my hourly rate?”.
Hopefully now you got an idea about clients, their type and how to behave with your clients. Let’s move for more details –
1. Present the working plans smartly:
That’s the primary key of your project success. Lets share an example with you. Suppose you are in a restaurant and you have ordered some delicious foods. When a service boy came to serve food, what should you notice first? I think it must be the look and feel of dish presentation. Human psychology told that, “people pick those things too fast, which look attractive and gorgeous”.
As a Freelance developer/designer, you should keep your focused on this term and when you get any kind of project like design or development, first of all you need to analyze client requirements/demands, then you present your own ideas in smart way. If you do so, then client must appropriate your working attitude. If you are working with a non-technical client, then try to explain all sort of your ideas in simple way, so that client can understand your points properly. Don’t use too much technical terms with them.
2. Be clear about client requirements:
Second key term is “Client requirements “. Before starting any kind of job in real world, you should know ins and outs about client requirements. Research on them, try to gather all possible tools, books or required resources to fulfill client requirements. If you do so, then you can avoid thousands of problem while you are working in a project.
If you’ve confusion about any requirement, then don’t hesitate to ask question. It’s true that, Clients are bound to answer your questions . But keep in mind “asking too much question is bad for your impression”. It means, You will never ask any question that relate with basic concepts of your project work. Keep them posted about critical parts and try to pick information about “How they like to see their ideas” in project. Ask them for sending graphical interface like Image, PDF, Doc files. It will help you to make more clear about client ideas. After clearing all information from them, you are now ready to start your project.
3. Maintain A contract sheet (NDA):
It would be the best, if you can make a contract sheet (NDA) and write all your working scope in them. It will help you when client demand extra any thing that’s not listed in your contract work lists. Most of the times designer have faced such type of issues and they really fall in a false position. So, Make sure you are clear all requirement from your clients.
4. Build A Professional Portfolio:
As a freelancer like designer/programmer , you should have a portfolio website. There are lots of template/demos over the internet and from them you can learn how to make your portfolio website. Portfolio means , you should gather all information about yourself and your working skill in a single place. As a result client can get an overview about yourself , your business and your working skill.
Personally, I’m a full time web developer and part time designer. That’s why it’s very much important for me to create an portfolio website. When I felt the need of a portfolio website then, I’d created a nice but simple website and send links to my clients. You can’t imagine how much it helps me to get job quickly. Clients love to see a portfolio website before hiring a contractor. So, create a nice portfolio site for you!
If you are a developer or designer than don’t get late to create a portfolio website.
5. Deal patiently with non-tech clients:
Most of the time, designers have to face such type of clients. When you are working with non-tech client you should keep patience and try to explain your ideas with simple words. You should advice or share your ideas in a decent way just like you teach a children. In the project session, there are a lot of situation arises when we should keep your mind cool and try to convince client. In my last post I’d shared some of my working experience.
Today I’m going to share my experience. I’d got a foreign client who search for a designer. I’m not too much geek in design but have sound knowledge in Photoshop. I’d started my work and you don’t believe that he gave me lot’s of pain in working session 🙁 But at the end of the work I’d realized that I learned a lot from that project and also earned money.
What my tricks, I’d just keep my patience and always tried to hear client ideas. At the end of the work, I was rewarded for my patience. So, don’t forget to be cool while you are working with a non-tech client.
6. Work for the quality:
Clients are love to get quality work. When you provide them quality service, then you will never think to pay your payment/reward. Some people in freelancing think that, they can work for money! After few day’s they realize their weakness. If you only work for the money, then you lose your concentration from work quality. As a result, your client will discover a lot of fault from your work and can’t feel interest to work with you anymore in future.
Before starting work think for few seconds that you act like a client. If you are a client then how to evaluate this project? and how much you satisfy with that work? In this way you can improve your work quality. It’s true that, we all work for money. But if you run behind the money then you’ll going disappoint very soon. So, you should put more emphasis in your work quality.
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