The Malcontent Clients

malcontent clients

adjective: (the) malcontent (client)
1.    1. Dissatisfied and complaining or making trouble.

Far be it for me to speculate on the life of a malcontent, and how they got to be that way.  I just know it’s a pretty Grimm situation when you run into one.  Moreover, doing business with one.   It’s easy to spot one in the flesh, they have they classic sour look on their face, wagging their finger at passerby’s. But over the phone, or on the line, it’s tricky.

At first, everything is always rainbows and lollipops during the discovery phase.  Laughs abound.  But then you deliver the mockups.  Majority of the time, the client likes parts of sample-0a and parts of sample-0b.  Perfect.  You combine the differences come up with sample-0c and you’re now in development mode.

Sometimes they don’t like either of them.  That’s fair, we love feedback and we’ll come up with another round.  It’s the way in which they deliver their discontent that always interests me.  I’m fully aware that I work for the client, but to accuse me of having just come out of design school, or of being deaf when we were talking…is pretty choice.  Especially when at the end of the conversation they ask when the new concepts will be ready.  You already cashed the chiseled down check and paid your team the dozens of dollars they are rightfully owed… so you bow your head, careful not to make eye contact and sputter out your standard, 5-7 days response.  But of course that’s not good enough, they want it in 3…

Finally when the design does get approved, you think your headache is gone.  Fool.  These are malcontents.  It’s never over.  The font is wrong; their bio picture needs to be bigger, now it’s too big.  They constantly tell you they are frustrated, they keep making change requests, because you just can’t be bothered, and want the project done.  Fool.  It’s never done.

The most frustrating part of the whole process is not that you have to do the work, or that you’re way under appreciated.  You have kids.  You can take all that.  No, it’s that you feel into the trap once again.  You thought you’d be better this time around, you thought you were better prepared.  But rust never sleeps, it’s just creeps real slow.  “It’s A Trap” indeed.