Speckyboy RSS: 4 Ways Clients Can Hurt Project Outcomes (and How You Can Save the Day)

Your latest Speckyboy content is here!.

Speckyboy Design Magazine

Design News, Resources & Inspiration

4 Ways Clients Can Hurt Project Outcomes (and How You Can Save the Day)


By Eric Karkovack on May 04, 2021 10:34 am


Whether you’re building a website, mobile app or even a marketing campaign, everyone involved is working towards a successful outcome. And, although the stakeholders share this common goal, they may have very different thoughts about how to get there.

This can be problematic. Everyone involved has to be on the same page. If not, that puts a project’s success in jeopardy. With people pulling the process in multiple directions, it’s too hard to get a grasp on which is best.

Clients can be especially difficult to deal with in this area. And it’s not because designers are somehow perfect (we’re not). It’s often a matter of competing styles and/or understanding what needs done and the methods for doing so.

With that, let’s explore some ways that a client could negatively impact the outcome of a project. Along the way, we’ll also discuss some potential solutions. Let’s get started!

Lacking a Clear Goal

It stands to reason that you can’t help a client achieve their goal if no one knows what it is. When you’re provided with either a vague description or maybe none at all – what can you do?

The first task is to try and understand your client’s perspective. Part of the issue could stem from a lack of experience in working on creative projects. Maybe they know they need a website, but haven’t had one built before. Or they had a bad experience with a previous designer. Thus, they’re in the dark about what they should expect.

It’s also possible that their particular line of work may not lend itself to this type of thinking. Luckily, they hired someone who does know a bit about the subject – you.

Having an honest conversation about the project can do wonders. Steer the talk towards what a website can do for their organization – be it sales, leads or brand awareness. When a client better understands what the potential outcomes can be, they can make an informed decision.

A group of directional signs.

Demanding Complete Control Over the Project

If a client is paying you to do a job, they should rightly wield a certain amount of control. They get to determine what the optimal outcome is and set (or agree to) budget parameters. A designer’s job is to make it happen. No argument there.

But there are situations when a client becomes a little too dictatorial. And it can lead to some really poor choices being made.

For example, think about a person who insists upon a color scheme that isn’t accessible. This is morally and (potentially) legally objectionable. Yet, even when advised against it, their “damn the torpedoes” attitude puts the project at risk.

Of course, there are any number of other scenarios where a controlling client can wreak havoc. It could be choosing software that isn’t right for the job, picking the cheapest possible web host or refusing to acknowledge mobile users.

This can be a tough one to resolve – but it’s worth the effort to try. A data-driven personality may be swayed by some hard proof of the consequences. Or it may be a matter of establishing a level of mutual trust (or enlisting someone who has that trust to plead your case).

If you simply can’t get through to them, so be it. They will have to live with the consequences. And they can’t say you didn’t warn them.

A person holding their fists together.

An Absence of Leadership

Yes, some clients may demonstrate the exact opposite behavior of the aforementioned power-hungry boss. And the results can be just as bad – if not worse.

You often see this in the form of design politics. Different stakeholders are all pushing their (conflicting) ideas simultaneously. The person nominally in charge does nothing to help sort out the mess. Meanwhile, you’re trying to prevent a bad case of whiplash from turning your head back-and-forth as they argue in front of you.

Attempting to work with all of these different factions is unlikely to be productive. After you do exactly what the head of advertising wants, the human resources guru may just tell you to put it back the way it was. Such is life when in political turmoil.

If no one is taking charge, then you’ll have to step into the void. Kindly explain the issue to that head honcho and implore them to take action. If not for the good of the project, then at least for your own sanity.

Sometimes this is exactly the wakeup call that’s needed to get things going in the right direction.

Letter tiles that spell out "CHAOS".

Copying the Competition

There’s a myth that, because your competition does something, you have to do it too. Nobody wants to be left out of the fun. It sure seems like a lot of organizations subscribe to this philosophy.

That’s not to say a competitor didn’t do something well. In that case, it’s great to be inspired by an idea that can be implemented into your own project. The problem is when a client becomes enamored with something that’s not so good.

When working with a new client, it’s common to ask them for a few example websites that they like. It’s a good way to get a feel for what they are looking to achieve. But, almost inevitably, that list of examples will include some poorly-crafted site from a competitor – and that’s the one they like the most.

Seeing this might make your skin crawl. But it’s important to stay calm and find some positive aspects of this no-good, very bad website. You can point these items out to your client, then gently explain the failures as well.

As a gesture of good will, it’s OK to suggest an idea or two that can be brought over to your client’s project. From there, you can go about the process of building something much better.

A neon sign that reads: "Don't just take, give".

Help Your Clients Make the Best Possible Decisions

It probably goes without saying that clients aren’t looking to sabotage their own projects. Some simply have preconceived ideas about what works best, while others lack concrete ideas.

This is where a web designer can play a pivotal role. By acting as a guide, you can help a client develop a solid strategy and learn more about the processes involved. As they become more familiar with the pros and cons of various ideas, they’ll likely make better decisions.

That, in turn, will lead to a more ideal outcome. And that’s a goal everyone can agree on.

The post 4 Ways Clients Can Hurt Project Outcomes (and How You Can Save the Day) appeared first on Speckyboy Design Magazine.



Read in browser »

Recent Articles:

8 Stunning Examples of CSS & JavaScript 3D Text Effects
Weekly News for Designers № 590
Proprietary vs. Open-Source: How to Choose the Right CMS
When Chaos Invades: Keeping Your Freelance Business Going During a Crisis
8 Stunning Examples of CSS Glassmorphism Effects
Share
Tweet
+1
Share
Forward
Copyright © 2021 Speckyboy Design Magazine, All rights reserved.
You signed up for daily Speckyboy Design Magazine email alerts either via Feedburner or directly through our site.

Our mailing address is:
Speckyboy Design Magazine
27 Braeside Park
Inverness, Scotland IV2 7HL
United Kingdom

Add us to your address book


Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.

Older messages

Speckyboy RSS: 8 Stunning Examples of CSS & JavaScript 3D Text Effects

Monday, May 3, 2021

Your latest Speckyboy content is here!. Speckyboy Design Magazine Design News, Resources & Inspiration 8 Stunning Examples of CSS & JavaScript 3D Text Effects By Eric Karkovack on May 02, 2021

Speckyboy RSS: Weekly News for Designers № 590

Saturday, May 1, 2021

Your latest Speckyboy content is here!. Speckyboy Design Magazine Design News, Resources & Inspiration Weekly News for Designers № 590 By Paul Andrew on Apr 30, 2021 04:51 pm Envato Elements FigJam

Speckyboy RSS: Proprietary vs. Open-Source: How to Choose the Right CMS

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Your latest Speckyboy content is here!. Speckyboy Design Magazine Design News, Resources & Inspiration Proprietary vs. Open-Source: How to Choose the Right CMS By Eric Karkovack on Apr 28, 2021 07:

Speckyboy RSS: When Chaos Invades: Keeping Your Freelance Business Going During a Crisis

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Your latest Speckyboy content is here!. Speckyboy Design Magazine Design News, Resources & Inspiration When Chaos Invades: Keeping Your Freelance Business Going During a Crisis By Eric Karkovack on

Speckyboy RSS: 8 Stunning Examples of CSS Glassmorphism Effects

Monday, April 26, 2021

Your latest Speckyboy content is here!. Speckyboy Design Magazine Design News, Resources & Inspiration 8 Stunning Examples of CSS Glassmorphism Effects By Eric Karkovack on Apr 26, 2021 09:13 am

✏ Is AMP Dead and Do We Care? React Markdown Editor, Bad vs Good Designs, and more...

Saturday, June 19, 2021

Poll: Is AMP Dead, and do We Care? WEBDESIGNERDEPOT.COM COMMENTS Bad Vs Good Accessible Designs USABILITYGEEK.COM COMMENTS Client-Side Routing in Next.js SMASHINGMAGAZINE.COM COMMENTS React Markdown

The 25 Best Accent Chairs, According to AD100 Designers

Friday, June 18, 2021

Plus, more sourcing inspiration. View in your browser | Update your preferences Architectural Digest AD PRO logo image Welcome to the PROcurement, our new weekly roundup of the best designs to source

✏ 40 Javascript Memes, CSS Specificity Calculator, HTML Semantic Tags Sheet, and more...

Friday, June 18, 2021

The Problem with UX/UI Portfolios MARKBOULTON.CO.UK COMMENTS CSS Specificity Calculator POLYPANE.APP COMMENTS Your Image is Probably not Decorative SMASHINGMAGAZINE.COM COMMENTS Top 40+ Javascript

What Will Back-To-Normal Look Like?

Friday, June 18, 2021

A weekly dispatch from Architectural Digest's Editor in Chief. ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌

UX/UI Portfolios, Feels, Bear Plus Snowflake, Optical Size, Aspect Ratio

Friday, June 18, 2021

The 5 best design links, every day. Curated by a selection of great editors. Email not displaying properly? View browser version. Sidebar June 18 2021 The problem with UX/UI portfolios markboulton.co.

RWD Weekly #462— the one about the little yellow book

Friday, June 18, 2021

No preview text for you this week, you've got to commit to reading this one by opening it first :) Read online Hello again, welcome back to RWD Weekly #462 happy Friday! This week I've been

Meet Image Optimization, A New Smashing Book

Thursday, June 17, 2021

Meet Addy Osmani's new book on image optimization: from formats and compression to delivery and maintenance. Brand new book: Image Optimization by Addy Osmani. Dearest Friend, How do we deliver

🔥 Dashing Mobile UI Designs and more

Thursday, June 17, 2021

Round Up The Newest UpLabs Weekly Freebies 🤠 Check out some fresh high-quality Freebies that have been handpicked for you by the UpLabs team this week. The New Super Fast Way to Build a Website

Holly Hunt Reinvents Herself Once Again

Thursday, June 17, 2021

Plus, a houseplant sells for almost $20000 at auction (image) Architectural Digest AD PRO Logo house plant - philodendron Think You Love Houseplants? This One Just Sold for Almost $20000 Read More →

✏ 3 Ways to Design More Inclusively, What is a Design System?2021 Fun Typefaces, and more...

Thursday, June 17, 2021

3 Ways to Design More Inclusively WEBDESIGNERDEPOT.COM COMMENTS What is a Design System? ROBERTCREATIVE.COM COMMENTS Animal Crossing Font FONTSPANDA.COM COMMENTS Some Fun Typefaces for 2021 KOTTKE.ORG