Things go wrong

The Client Where Things Go Wrong

At some point we will all have that one client where things go wrong.  And keep going wrong.

Your working relationship is probably very good, however on the day to day work front you may find that you are making mistakes.  Silly mistakes that don’t happen with other clients.  These mistakes could be down to historical facts/set up or data issues that you are not aware of. They could be due to a knowledge gap on you, or your customers, part.  Or it could be down to misintrpretation of requests and communications.

So how do you deal with it?  Be open and honest and don’t try to hide the issue.  No one likes to make mistakes  – especially when your livelihood may depend on the work, or referrals from it.  

Its much better to admit to the mistakes, explain why they happened and come up with a plan to rectify the situation.  If you need extra help or knowledge, then find it.  It may seem obvious, but if the error is yours don’t charge the client to fix it.

Identify the  reasons for the error and learn from them.  Does the process need changing. Do you need extra training?  Does the underlying system need updating or changing?

One the situation is corrected you may be on tenterhooks to see aqht will happen next .  The client may well have a loss in faith in your abilities.  You need to expect tis and take it on the chin and continue to deliver to the best of your ability.

You may also decide, if too many things keep going wrong, that this isn’t the contract for you.  In this case you need to talk to your client about finding someone else to take on the work.  This is a big step, however it will work in your favour as the stress of working with this client will go.

Whatever you decide to do, take action in a positive and supportive way for your client.  Leaving or continuing to work on a positive footing will serve you well in the future.

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