I should tell you what your contractor doesn’t dare – you aren’t a perfect client. I should be frank – you are hard work in spite of the fact that you pay money.
Indeed we owe our jobs to you and in return, we put our hearts and souls into your projects. We are prepared to work longer to ensure you are fully satisfied. However, you don’t always appreciate our efforts even being the perfect client.
What is a perfect client like? Why are they so rare? Perhaps it is due to the tough competition on the market that makes you pushy and demanding. Or is it the type of cooperation that gives you the liberty to treat your outsourcing team badly?
You may be staggered at my impertinence and raise your eyebrows at what came over me to put this question. It seems the characteristics of the perfect client are not too obvious. Salesmen, developers, managers both complain and worry about you all the time. They try to predict your queries and concerns before each call. They draft and redraft numerous proposals and estimates only to get your approval. They dread and respect you at one and the same time. Your preferences often far outweigh their family commitments.
Subsequently, we are looking for a perfect client, the one, who will comply with our requirements, not the other way round. Of course we keep in mind our own idea about the perfect client template.
In-depth knowledge and clear vision of the end product
When you have a hazy idea of why your product is practical, who its target audience is, how you can best capitalize on it, it hardly simplifies our work. It leads to misunderstandings and accusations, and we waste a lot of time redesigning, re-estimating and restoring our good relationship. It would be infinitely easier if you would provide us with precise and clear documentation.
Even if all specifications are settled and analysed, the development process tends to be unpredictable and there are always issues that need discussing. You have to be approachable figuratively and literally. You cannot avoid conversations, ignore your team’s requests or dodge answers. Communication must be done swiftly and instantly because a delay on your end causes a standstill in the development. Furthermore, it disheartens people and they may perceive the project as a burden, which they need to dispose of.
When working in different time zones, contractors and clients need to be flexible when it comes to meetings and calls. In particular, it takes its toll on developers, who frequently have to sacrifice their evenings to be available for you. However, you cannot expect them to do that constantly.
Another thing: it often happens that you turn a deaf ear to the developers’ suggestions, keep changing your mind about the product or rule out sensible ideas on a whim. You have to be reasonable or else the cooperation will go downhill.
Even though “money no object” isn’t about this business, we still hope to receive payments as agreed. You mustn’t suddenly vanish or refuse to pay for no reason.
Enthusiasm is crucial for the success of any deed, not to mention the business. You need to be enthusiastic about your idea and get the developers hooked on it as well. You should make them believe they are working on a valuable and potentially profitable product.
We have realistic expectations, don’t we? An approachable, reasonable and enthusiastic client with a clear vision of the end product is ideal. Are you that client?