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Re: Advice regarding an Unbearable Client I don't want to lose

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Mark Suszko
Re: Advice regarding an Unbearable Client I don't want to lose
on Jun 17, 2011 at 7:12:30 pm


First, hope your bosses don't google your name.

Second, you don't like the quality level, understood, but in the end it is only about what the client wants, and they seem happy with things as they are. Sometimes there's no explaining that.

But you may be worrying about a problem that the owners don't see as a problem. Promises of improving their quality may not be a "value proposition" for them; instead, selling points like reliability at the current quality level, ("I can keep this from exploding for one more week") or efficiency ("I can rig this so you can get twice as many people thru here in the same amount of time as before") may be what interests them.

While YOU and most COW members would be trying to improve quality, it may be that you're trying too hard to polish the chrome on a car the owner is about to send to the scrapyard anyway. Operations like the one you describe are more likely to be completely replaced by new technology, instead of nursed along with periodic upgrades. It is easier and simpler and maybe even cheaper to rip out an old standard-def analog plant and just replace everything with new, integrated HD infrastructure, than to "put new wine in old wineskins", as the Bible says.

As to your freelancing as an engineer, do it for free only as long as it helps you make your work easier. If you're doing it just for the company, you should be billing for it. Otherwise you'll be taken advantage of. If they can't afford to pay for it, explore other options like a trade-out.

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