In the freelance industry, mistakes are excusable for only a few times; if you do not consider your job seriously, nobody will give any consideration to you.
One of the many things you must keep in mind is your relationship with clients. It is quite vulnerable and therefore, you must protect it.
The freelancer-client relationship is determined on the basis of a number of factors such as workload, interaction, and whatnot. You, as a freelancer, must know how your clients operate and avoid anything that bothers or annoys them. But, how do you know that?
Well, in this article, we will cover a number of things that clients do not like to hear. You keep them in your mind and make sure you abstain from engaging in any of the things mentioned here.
So, here are ten things that clients absolutely hate to hear:
1. It will be submitted later
Procrastination is not tolerated by clients. You may have other commitments, but that does not really matter to clients. They will be amenable to your excuses only for a couple of times, and after wards, they will brush you away quite impolitely.
Clients hate it when freelancers do not do their job on time, and when postponing the submission, they do not even explain their reasons.
Do not make commitments if you cannot handle them!
2. Apologies for late response
Communication is anyway not as swift as in a regular employment scenario. Freelancers and clients maintain contacts through emails and phone calls, and therefore, it becomes necessary to keep tabs on these modes always.
Freelancers often avoid correspondence from clients deliberately and excuse themselves with an insincere apology. Clients are not fools, and they know where you are getting at.
Consistent communication is a key to a healthy and long-lasting relationship between clients and freelancers. You must be prompt, ready and available for work, and organized. If you fail to observe the basic necessities of a professional relationship, you are doomed for good.
3. I am charging way less than what I usually do
Never be condescending to clients. You might be a super talent and well-established freelancer, but you are not the boss of the industry. It is important you avoid showing your generosity by uttering “I am charging you less” or “I have given you a discount” and all.
It usually happens that clients ask freelancers their pay rate and the latter get too much involved in showing off how much they earn and how much generosity they have to offer. Such attitude will cost you your reputation and job.
4. Your whole idea is a downer
You, as a freelancer, are supposed to get the job done. You can make suggestions, but cannot reject the idea behind the job. For example, if you are a freelance designer, you may come across a client not so knowledgeable in designing. You need not tell him how much wasteful his idea is.
You work for the client. You do what the client wants. There is no contest going on to outsmart the other.
The problem with such attitude is that it degrades your credibility. Clients would not consider you as cooperative and reasonable, and if they do not consider you so, they will not hire you.
5. I have made some changes for the good
Clients always tender guidelines as to how to go about with the project, and what is expected from you—observance. You abide by the guidelines and are allowed to make a few changes, but anything you do should not materially deviate from what is expected by the clients.
If at all you want to tweak some major changes into the project, you inform the clients. Do not hand over an amended project without informing the clients first. The project is theirs—do not do whatever you want to do.
6. It will be done, no problem
Be wary of making too many commitments. It is a common habit among freelancers to boldly make commitments without even thoroughly appreciating the requirements of the project. Many would not even read or hear the details properly and immediately make lofty promises.
Do not promise anything unless you are sure you can deliver.
7. Yeah, m on it. Thanx.
If you text your clients like this, then you are no good. It is important to make your clients take you with seriousness, but with this kind of texting, you will never succeed.
All your correspondences should be done in a formal tone, and even if you know the client personally, you should avoid engaging in informal conversations when working.
A professional attitude is a healthy, learning experience—embrace it whole heartedly.
8. This is how I work
When the client hires you, he expects you to be flexible. You may not always get the kind of work you are good at. The client might have a different working style, and flexibility is expected on your part.
Never say “this is my way of doing things” if you really intend to keep your job to yourself. Uttering such words will show your arrogance—which is not good.
9. I have worked with better clients
Every client is different. Some are friendly; some are loud and strict. You will get a variety of experiences in the freelance industry, and there is no room for complaints.
Whenever you are engaged with a client, never say “my previous clients were better” or something of that sort. Treat every client of yours independent of your experiences with previous clients—such attitude will help you engage positively with all your clients.
10. I will tell you when I will be ready to take up work
Many freelancers leave halfway, but they are never clearly explicit about their intentions to quit. They will make all kinds of roundabout statements such as the one mentioned as the sub-heading.
It is advised that you be direct about your situation. Tell your clients clearly that you will not be engaging with them anymore. Do not keep them hanging for no good reason.