We have been in the marketing industry for about 6 or 7 years now. (Whoohoo!) During that time, we’ve worked with quite a rainbow of clients and learned a few things! Some relationships have been smooth sailing and enjoyable, while others have been more challenging.
We’ve created a quick list of key elements that are necessary must-have’s for both parties to help your project go as smoothly as possible:
- Have contracts – Having everything in writing sets clear expectations and avoids miscommunications. If you aren’t comfortable with something in the proposal, or are unclear on a specific item, simply request an edit before signing.
- Be aware of what is in the scope of the project, and what isn’t – If you request additional work outside the original scope of the project, be aware that this will require more time and effort, and therefore additional payment. If you are unclear on what that scope is, make sure to clarify it in the proposal.
- Be appreciative – Here at SCC, it’s important to keep a positive work atmosphere, and help employees feel valued. We work hard to keep our clients happy AND our employees happy. An appreciated team is a loyal team. Appreciation has been proven in business to boost work ethic and productivity, not to mention respect between parties. On the other hand, if a team feels undervalued and unappreciated by a client, they will feel discouraged and motivation will decrease.
- Be flexible – In the world of technology, there are many moving parts and things are always changing. Once in awhile, something unexpected and beyond the control of either party can affect a project timeline or scope (i.e. a discovered virus, a conflict within a platform, or some other factor that might require additional work). Once that occurs, a team should do their best to communicate the new information to the client and explain how it might affect the project. It can be difficult to be flexible when something might affect a timeline or overall cost…the best teams communicate clearly and quickly, and the best clients are understanding and trusting.
- Do your research – Do you have an idea of how much a service might cost? It’s helpful to do some research before getting a quote so that you know in what range your business budget falls.
- Request clear expectations in regards to consult calls/communication – A client who expects daily or even weekly phone calls is going to require a lot more time, work, and energy than one who expects monthly calls. If this is expected, make sure it’s in the contract and that the time is compensated for. Generally, unless they are written into the service contract, consultation calls are an additional service.
- Be aware of time differences – If you are on the east coast (or London for example), be aware and considerate of the fact that a west coast company is going to be several hours behind you in getting their day started.
All these help the team you hire stay productive, focused, and working at their best!