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It’s been a rough few weeks around here. I’m pretty sure that all of my clients met for drinks at the global Haterade distributor and decided that this is the week to make my life difficult and sad. I’ve managed to keep my sunny disposition intact, but it’s trying.

Here are 10 things I wish I could tell my clients, but won’t due to my advanced self-preservation instincts:

  1. After the first time you blow off a scheduled call with me, I wonder if you’re going to respect my time for the duration of our working relationship. After the second time you blow off a scheduled call with me, I have trouble taking your requests to speak with me seriously.
  2. I’m not lying when I tell you that I’ll “be out of the house and away from my computer.” That is not code for “I’m in my house but don’t feel like working today,” and emailing me multiple times will not cause me to magically teleport back to my computer.
  3. It’s really creepy when you tell me that I “sound so young!” on the phone.
  4. Your business is your raison d’etre, and that’s totally rad. Don’t expect your business to be my life, though.
  5. Not everything is a 4-alarm crisis.
  6. When you go against every piece of advice I have regarding your project and demand that I do the work in a way that contradicts all “best practices,” I mentally divorce myself from your results. I’ll do the work however you like, but good luck making me feel bad if it doesn’t work out for you.
  7. I like having friendly conversations. We can talk about the weather or you can tell me about your kid’s soccer match. It makes my work day more interesting and makes it easier to remember you.
  8. Asking for free stuff is a really shady way to start our professional relationship. Do you give random people free stuff all the time?
  9. “We don’t pay you enough!” Is not a compliment that makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. It’s a dig that illustrates that you are fully cognizant of the fact that you don’t pay me enough.
  10. If you don’t answer my emails, I can’t do your project for you.