In your career as a designer, you will meet people of different traits and characteristics. You will be pleased to have a nice client who is ready to support the project making it easier for you. But you might also be stressed if you meet a client who is not supportive and may give you lots of problems. You really cannot do away with meeting different types of clients because there are different types of people. Yet, it doesn’t mean that you are left with no choice. You can always do away with bad clients and problem clients. You can do that by first knowing what a bad client is.

It can give you a great advantage if you have smelled a bad client coming. This can alert you to do things in order to drive them away. The earlier you notice, the better. The earlier you notice, the earlier you will be able to stop transacting with them to avoid problems. So, for today’s post, we will be giving you some signs of a bad client so you can recognize them. Here they are:

1. Hard to communicate with.

Hard to communicate with

Communication is a vital thing in every business transaction. Hence, it is important to communicate well with the client in any possible way – may that be in email, phone call or personal conversation. Some clients are hard to speak with. They might not entertain you or they will not answer your questions well. Some do not try to understand your point and will stick to what they believe in. Other clients only want you to listen to them but they do not want to listen to what you will say. These people forgot that communication is a two way process. Failure from the other end would cause trouble and misunderstanding. You may want to look into our Tips for Effective Communication with Design Clients.

2. Wastes time.

Wastes time

While you are making sure that all the projects you have will finish on time, your client is dragging time. He procrastinates a lot whenever you request for something that you need for the project. He will say yes to you and then end up doing nothing. This can delay your process of the project. When deadline comes and you are not yet done, he might even blame you and tell you that you are so slow even it was actually his fault for procrastinating much.

3. Knows it all.

Knows it all

It is a good thing when a client knows what he is doing but it can also be a disadvantage. Clients who know everything or who thinks knows everything couldn’t be good. He might be criticizing your work and will never be contented with what you are doing. They might also give you some instructions on what to do with the design even if he doesn’t really know. He thinks that he is always right and that what you are doing is merely second rate.

4. Have many alibis for payment.

Have many alibis for payment

There are also clients who would have many alibis when payment time comes. Since you have payment terms, your client knows when to pay. This means that he should have prepared the payment before the said date. But there are some instances that there are really some delays. The designer could understand this but if it happens over and over again, that is not good anymore. He might have intentionally done it so he cannot give you the payment on time.

5. Have too many expectations.

Have too many expectations

Clients already have an idea on what the project may look like. This means that he knows what you need and what he can expect from it. But there are clients who seem to have so many expectations and most of them are unachievable for the project. They seem not to understand the limits of your work. It would be hard to be always trying to please them by reaching their expectations. To avoid that, you can stop working with them.

6. Wants you to do unethical things.

Wants you to do unethical things

This really happens to some designers especially for big companies. Some wants you to write a higher price for the company even if you are charging lower so that they can get a commission from the work they are doing. Other clients also let you do other things that are beyond your function as a designer and may be against your personal principles. They can even harass you to follow them and even black mail you. You do not have to follow them.

7. Frequent misunderstandings.

Frequent misunderstandings

Understanding is an important thing when transacting with a client. Hence, if frequent misunderstanding occurs, there could be a problem on you or the client. If you have observed that you are only having problems to one person, then that person is the one who has a problem understanding you. Misunderstandings can affect the project a lot. It will not create a smooth sailing process and might even cause delays.

8. Have frequent bad moods.

Have frequent bad moods

Nothing could be more appalling than a person who changes mood from time to time. You can be troubled thinking about how you will approach a client since you do not know his mood at the moment. It would be hard to deal with someone like this especially if you are afraid of getting reprimanded of mistakes you did not even commit.

9. Denies his words.

Denies his words

When you speak with the client, there are things that you will agree upon for the project. But there are clients who deny some things that they have said before. This is to keep themselves on the safe zone. There are really people who act this way, putting the blame on you when mistakes arise even if these were instructions from them. Or maybe some of them are just honestly forgetful. Keep a record of your conversation through some notes. Others also record the talk so it can be replayed when necessary.

10. A client is rude.

A client is rude

It is easy to spot a client who is rude. He doesn’t talk to you well and even shouts at you sometimes. He is not a good listener and would use harsh words when talking. You can oftentimes hear him curse this and that. Rude clients are also disrespectful. He might not even look at you as a professional.

It’s Your Turn Now

Meeting those kinds of clients can be an experience that can mold you into a better designer. You will be able to learn how to handle bad clients well if you have known the signs earlier. So, after looking into this list, we hope that you are now totally aware. Look forward to our post on how to get rid of bad clients because you don’t really have to work with them. Do you have other bad client traits in mind? Share it with us.

Kareen Liez

About the author: A Civil Engineer who has a construction business and a youth volunteer for a civic organization. She also contributes for a local newspaper due to her unwavering passion to write.