Why you need to educate your client?

Why you need to educate your client?

YES? NO? Let’s talk and collaborate instead

So, what do I mean here by educating your client? I am trying to stress upon the situation where generally the outcome is simply YES/NO from the either side i.e either you agree with a client or say no OR either client agrees/disagree with you and there is no further engagement to get into a deal.

How can we improve this situation and make it more collaborative approach?

First, let us try to understand the impact of always saying YES to a client.

Most new businesses try to satisfy their client as much as possible and try to get a deal by saying YES to everything that client demands: low budget, tech stack, iterations, design, etc.

This can be harmful to your business, your team and for a client as well in the longer term as follows:

  • Agreeing to low budget which is not affordable for your business results in burning hole in your pocket, which will result in allocating affordable junior developers for client’s project or you will tend to keep that project in low priority as soon as you get a good deal from another client where you will try to allocate experience developers. This will eventually affect the quality of your client’s project with a lower budget and result in bad impression for your business. The point is to always give the best quality to a client and not to overcommit or agree to everything which is out of your reach.

  • If you agree to develop using tech stack which is not your team’s skill set, you are again putting the project at hand to risk and eventually spoiling relation with your client if you can’t deliver in what you agreed upon. Always know your strength and take up the task which you can properly execute.

  • Saying YES to impossible deadlines. This will put your team to stress and affect your company’s culture and the environment in longer run eventually resulting in lower quality and efficiency from the team due to burnouts.

  • Allowing a client to override your design teams proposal or your developer’s proposal without reason. Your client can be both technical/non-technical in terms of service he is getting from you, but simply saying yes to what client asks for will demoralize your team members for their creativeness in terms of design or for proposing the right solution in terms of development. It is always advisable to allow your team to be a part of a discussion.

Allowing your team members to put their point forward is more important then concluding who is right or who is wrong.

These are just some of the examples where business tends to simply nod to what client asks for. This is really not advisable and can be risky to both your business and client in a longer run.

Does it mean you simply say no when a client asks something which is not feasible on your side due to whatever reason? No, you should always try to explain and discuss what is feasible and what is not in a constructive way.

Agree, that there are some situation in which you analyze a particular client as a red flag and not fit for long term association with you when you tend to simply close the deal by saying NO. But, in most of the situation things can be discussed and there can be a win-win situation for both the parties.

Here are some of the ways in which you can replace a NO with a more constructive approach:

  • Understand that a client is not always familiar with the technologies or services you are offering and that is the reason that client has come to you in request of your service. So, try to explain things in which client can understand in a realistic way instead of using jargons.

  • If you give a quotation which a client cannot digest, try to break down your quotation feature wise which can show a clear picture to a client. Show them feature wise efforts in terms in terms of hours/days. Explain to them why your hourly rate is what it is due to the quality or the way you offer your service which justifies your rate.

  • When a design or logo is rejected, allow your design team to explain the aspects and thinking behind why they proposed it that way, this will allow client to have a more clear picture of the design thinking that went into the design that was proposed and if they don’t align with that, they will be open to provide their thinking into it resulting in a collaborative outcome.

  • Allow your developer to explain the standard way in which things need to be implemented to the client. For e.g it is a common situation in Mobile application development where the client expects to clone behavior of one platform to other even in terms of design but it may not be the standard way proposed by the platform and also their user will not be familiar with it. In this situation, it is always advisable to allow your expert developers to propose the standard guidelines in which things need to be developed.

  • If a client is technical and asks you to implement X framework instead of Y, always know the why behind it. It will help both the parties to understand which framework is advisable for your project. It often happens that people just go with the trend to use the latest tech and frameworks even if they don’t need it, resulting in complexing the situation unnecessarily. So, you should always know the why behind using the framework and discuss the same with a client if they have some different solutions.

Even if you don’t get into a deal with a client, having a discussion with them and coming to a collaborative decision will allow both the parties to communicate in future if they close on a sweet note.

What are your experiences and how do you handle such situation? Comment your experiences about the same which can be helpful to others dealing with the similar situations.

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