I just read this blog post from Carole at Freelance Fact File about keeping clients happy. She gives eight tips, but when I read them, I thought that some didn’t sound like fun but more like drudgery. If that’s the case, then I would be back to working in a cubicle. Below are the tips and my comments on how to keep yourself sane.
- Make sure you make yourself indispensable Make yourself known for quality work, but don’t make yourself so indispensable that you are the point person every thing. Draft a list of what you do for business continuity and to enumerate all the work you do.
- Always do a brilliant job Yes, do a brilliant job but don’t overpromise. Manage client expectations
- Become part of the team Know the team, be a team player but don’t get caught in the office politics.
- Never miss deadlines Don’t miss deadlines when it is solely up to you. If you are waiting on information from the client, then remind of the deadline and let them know politely that there slowing down the process and it may cost them money.
- Come up with good ideas. Yes! Come up great ideas and make sure they are in an email or documented somewhere.
- Show you’re prepared to be flexible – ongoing repeat work is worth the occasional weekend working. I personally don’t do weekends other than responding to a few emails. Communicate when you are available.
- Make yourself available at short notice Be flexible. Give “office hours” that you are available and options to reach you but make sure that client knows to respect your time.
- Remember that the client is always right. The client is not always right, but do what they ask anyway. If you feel that what they are asking is totally wrong, suggest an alternative and put in an email.
Post completion of a project, ask the client to write a recommendation on LinkedIn and refer you to others who may need your services.