We have worked with some terrible clients from a project standpoint. And although I ensure that the end product is something that I would be proud to show, the client in these cases can make the journey a tough one.

When I am hired to solve a clients design problem, it is the beginning of a new relationship. A relationship that is governed by the way we humans interact with each other in traditional relationships. There is the honeymoon period. The first fight and the inevitable make up. The tough talk. And sometimes there is the breakup. I have been through a number of these and they are always different.

Recently we have worked with a client in the education space. In fact we have worked with them for a number of years. Now that I reflect upon the relationship it is easy to see that we were the “fix it” team. When they needed a team to come in a solve something in short timeframe, we were the team they called. We didn’t really bother to ask why we were always asked to work on tight deadlines with no budget, we just wanted to help them solve their problem.

A small website (less than a dozen pages) should take about 1 month to develop if it is done correctly and everyone is moving down the “project” field together. In this particular case the project began as a “quick fix” and then quickly turned into the project that couldn’t.

During the course of the project three project managers either left or were let go, and each time the project had to restart again while the new person was brought up to speed. That alone is part of the business we are in but combine that with the fact that the founder suffers from a control issue and derails projects with little mind to the process that is in place, then you have a project that chases its tail.

At the end of a project like this one, the break up is much needed, and the blame falls to the vendor. Companies like this one would benefit from looking within instead of blaming the outside vendors all of the time. In my experience the health of a company is shown by the happiness of the workers. And these workers need to have a clown party.

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