I started working for myself at the top of the year. I went the “Design Agency” route. You know, when its really just you, maybe two freelancers or friends that help you in areas you kinda struggle in and you front like you a whole agency with a studio in Bushwick Brooklyn, when its really you and your Macbook Pro and the cafe with free internet you can ride your bike to. Moving in this client driven direction has schooled me on a few things, some I like and others frankly drive me fuckin mad.
Working mainly as a one man team searchin and lurkin for paid work where web design, logos and branding are the provided services means I lean toward gaining clients to gain work to gain the money to pay for my Hennessy and black t-shirts. Finding clients, I’m not mad at that part. Its humbling, sending email after email, text after text all in effort to land the job to get paid. But once I’m paid is where is where the shit gets nuts.
I’ve found, as soon as that money hits the Paypal the client has two options. Be understanding and sensible to the process or, they can decide to go straight bonkers with unrealistic deadlines, over communicating like sending me an email and a text that they emailed me and a call to go over what they emailed me and to tell me they texted me and that they left a voicemail the day before. Then the revisions. The Fucking. Revisions. Its understood revisions, most times are going to happen, which is cool, I’m here to bring a nice product to every client. However, the expectations of what revisions are and how many are really in the scope of work or more importantly in their budget is another thing. Then per revision comes the onslaught of communication all the while at this point it seems as if the client has forgotten the “homie discount” we agreed on because apparently my low price was way too high for them but now all of the sudden the chump change sent to me for what was supposed to be both a simple process and design has become an avalanche of emails of feedback, tons of time lost and then to top it off, when the project is done, they little money thats left of the balance is paid late. Gross. Clearly all clients are not like this and it is also clear I should peep the signs of a difficult client before accepting the money from them. But sometimes, just like a crazy girlfriend, they know how to hide their crazy until after things get started.
After all is said and done its all a part of the game. Better processes weed out challenging clients. Challenging clients can’t always be avoided no matter how could you become, and its no doubt they will find ways to piss you off. So I sit back and get the work done, find a better client to work with moving forward that respects my time and talent and listen to Kendrick Lamar while doing so. I’m mad. But I’m not stressin.