Annoying Client Vol. 1 – Late with Everything, Somehow My Fault

So I should probably preface this by saying most of the clients I work with are great, and if not great at the very least logical.

There comes a time when after you’ve been working long enough that you’re going to run into some a$@#les.

I don’t know why I’m writing this, but if you are a potential client and you read this and you nod along saying “Well what’s wrong with that?” then chances are we are not going to get along.. so in a way it’s a good way to filter out clients that are going to be a nghtmare.

So anyway let’s get righ to it, I’ll have a heading for every client situation – also note as ridiculous as some of this stuff sounds I am not exagurrating this, so it’s not some comedy piece, all though at times it will sound like it.

So, in no particular order:

#1 Throw the whole website out because I wouldn’t transfer the domain

I had a client that I started working with who wanted me to build a very complex site and make an iPhone app. We started out and had a really good relationship, we even met up from time to time at a bar and talked about how the website was going.

Finally the client had released payment for the website side of the project and I started working on the iPhone app.

Finally the iPhone app was about 90% complete and I asked the client to provide feedback on it to get it to a final stage. All in all I was proud with the work that I have done and how little issues there were with the project.

So anyway, 2 months after the site is finished the client decides to actually take action and call the payment provider eWay to setup payment processing on the website. The client also decides to send me yet another spreadsheet to import into the website, which me, being the sucker that I am, agree to do for free, in exchange for getting 50% of the iPhone app invoice. Make sense so far?

So then he sends me this spreadsheet on let’s say Friday and I tell him that it should be imported by Monday (as I didn’t really have anything to do on the weekend). So come Monday I had imported the spreadsheet but there were a couple of issues left. So this client calls and starts crying to me and talking about how I have delayed the website. Anyway I let him whinge, it was no big deal, as long as I got my 50% of the invoice once I had done everything I needed to it should have been fine.

So after I had done my part (which included updating the website to comply with eWay guidelines) – eWay had told the client that the website was registered under Head Studios (domain and hosting) and that they would need a letter from me to authorize this company to use eWay as a payment processing platform on a domain owned by me.

Now the client freaked out that the domain/hosting was not under his name so he called me and requested that it be transferred to him.

I told him I’d be happy to transfer the domain/hosting over to his name once the iPhone app was finalised (since I had finished 90% of it and still hadn’t gotten paid anything). Now the client was having none of it and started saying s#@t like “Don’t f##k with my business!”

I told the client that I’m not f#@$ng with his business and I just want to get paid for my services, and at the end of the day he can still launch his site and take payments and have everything work even if the domain was under my name, so there shouldn’t be an issue.

So here’s where the story gets weird. We had a conversation about this domain issue but at the end of the day I thought the client had dropped it, and since my part of the work was all done and I hadn’t heard anything from the client, I was assuming we’re just waiting on eWay to approve his site.

Now lo and behold this guy calls me one morning about a week later to basically tell me that:

1) They no longer want to work with me
2) The domain issue left a “bad taste” in his mouth
3) They all ready have another developer who’s been working on making the site and he’s 1/3 my cost
4) They’re upset that their site is not mobile compatible – remember this is 2 months after he approved the site and released the deposit (not to mention that a mobile site was never included in the agreement)

Hmm… that’s interesting. I enquired further about this other so called developer who was making what I did at 1/3 the cost. So here’s how the convo went:

Kosta: “Wow, 1/3 of the cost. That’s really good, but can the website have the feature of importing the data like mine and matching it up to all the unique fields” (I’m not going to get too technical here but I had custom wordpress fields and repeater fields and wrote a script to populate these from an Excel file)
Client: “Yep! He’s all ready done that and I’ve imported a couple of jobs and it works!!”
Kosta: “Wow, that’s really good… can I see this website?”
Client: “I don’t have to show it to you!!”

Ah, so it’s the old “I have someone else who can do a better job then you at a better price but they are invisible and I cannot show them to you!”

What can you do with these people?

At this point I gave up on this client. Either he was trying to play for me an idiot or he really did find a developer that was going to screw everything up for him.

Anyway I’m chasing him up on my costs to develop the app and the silver lining is that I learned a lot on the project – but for a simple issue of a domain not being in his name (which I had assured him by email would be transferred) he threw away the whole site and started with someone else. Talk about a bad business move.

A sad day for all. That’s what you call lose-lose.

What a depressing blog post aye?

Well it’s not all sunshine and lollipops in this world. I bring the bad and the good unlike others who sugercoat everything.

P.S. I never did get the iPhone feedback, it’s been 4 weeks now – I’m sure he’ll email it to me in 2 months and then complain that I’m delaying the project. Same old story man.
P.P.S. I have sent the client an email with our original agreement and asked him where I had gone wrong and what part of my obligation I didn’t fulfill, of course there has been no response as to the old ‘avoidance’ tactic.
P.P.P.S. if you’re going to pretend like there’s someone out there at a better rate/service than me, at least put some effort into it. Pay some random $100 to say that he’s charging you $1 for an awesome site lol.

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