I am almost hitting the ten-year mark, and I still can’t handle some clients. If you are thinking of becoming a freelancer, learn to say no when you know you can’t deliver. Especially, with the below clients.
a). “I want it done like yesterday.”
The most common type and easier to handle. Here’s a simple rule and this should be in your Terms and Conditions, if a client wants his or her work done immediately, he or she should be willing to pay more for it.
If you have pending projects and you come across this client, Think Carefully Before Taking The Project. You might end up neglecting your other clients. I know some will disagree with me, but as a one-person team, you have to be careful.
b) “I don’t know what I am looking for, but you are the expert.”
This type of client is clueless and expects to build from what you have developed. You really can’t place a timeline. I would recommend taking this client only if you don’t have pending projects. That is if you are a one-person team.
If you still want to work with this client I would suggest learning how to use wireframes, if you are developing a website. It will help streamline your development process before coding. Otherwise, you will end up coding several layouts and let’s not forget about the client revisions.
c) Slow to reply or pay a deposit
Identifying this type of client is hard. They can take days or even weeks to respond or pay the down payment.
How do I handle them? Well, its either they sign a contract that stipulates a payment deadline or project timeline. If the client refuses to sign, you just saved yourself a ton of issues. For example, you finished modifying the design and emailed it to the client. Two weeks later they respond with more changes. How long do you think it will take you to complete that project?
I know of some freelancers who would merely send the client an email, and instead of waiting for their response, they will start on another project. Once that client responds, they will continue working on it. I can’t work like that.
If you are a one-man team then work on a contract that will stipulate the timeline and payment deadline. Don’t be greedy, you would rather increase your price and get less clients that pay well.