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Breaking Up With Design Client

Every healthy relationship requires equal amount of understanding and respect from each partner. As a graphic designer, you can’t always expect your client to be compromising and bully him with rude professionalism. Most of the times, it becomes a part of a designer’s job to educate his client about the procedure involved into creating a project.

Similarly, some clients are so rude and stubborn that they get on your nerves, block your creative energy, and make you want to scream right on their faces. These clients deserve to be shunned because of their disrespectful behavior. If the situation is beyond repair, it’s probably best for your sanity to just cut the cord and move away.

If you have already tried your best to work it out with a client and failed; here is what you can do to break up gracefully with a client.


Be Factual

Be Factual

Before you can inform the client of your decision, make sure you know the contract that you both signed at the beginning of the project. In our “bad client” scenario, most designers would typically have fulfilled all obligations to the client, but if not, please check what more needs to be delivered. Likewise, figure out what compensation they agreed to pay in case of a terminated relationship. Don’t decide on a whim that you don’t need to compensate for anything. Be factual and deal in an ethical way with your client whether you like him or not.


Refer the Client to another Designer

Refer the Client to another Designer

It is not always going to be the same reason to end relationship with a client. You just might not be able to get along due to personal reasons, or you may know someone who can deal with that particular client better. If yes, don’t wait for things to get out of control and hand over the client to someone else through recommendation. This helps smooth it over with your client and indicates a well-groomed professional attitude to other designers.

You should, however, keep in mind that if you are calling it quits with a client due to non-payment or malicious attitude, then please refrain from following this step and finish the relationship without making any referrals.


Like Nike Says: “Just Do It”

Like Nike Says: Just Do It

If you are calm, reasonable, and mature; you probably don’t need this advice. But even with these qualities, some professionals shy away from confronting their design clients. For such designers, we have a few gems to share:

Be Strong: Don’t expect people to just understand how you feel. Let them know in words. Those who can’t stand up for themselves, can’t stand up for anyone. Muster up the courage and follow Nike’s advice to just do it.
Be Professional: No honorable person ever breaks up on a phone, text, or an e-mail. That’s the rule. Use your judgment to hold the meeting where they can’t create a scene, but please, do it face to face.
Be Thankful: Be appreciative of what you learnt by working with this client. Every life experience teaches us something about ourselves and others. Thank your client for the unique learning experience you had with him.

Have you ever broken up with a client? If yes, how did you do it? Do you have any tips for graphic designers to tackle with difficult clients?


Tags: Breaking Up with a Design Client, Breaking up with bad clients, client-designer break up, design clients, end a client relationship, Graphic designer tips

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