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Re: Botched job?

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Mark Suszko
Re: Botched job?
on Apr 10, 2012 at 2:57:18 pm

Very wise counsel from Craig.

My 2 cents:

You stage payments in sections all thru the life of the project so that you or the client can stop at one of these waypoints and cancel if you need to, and only the work done up to that point is paid for.

Based off what Craig and others have already said, if the fault is yours, you should eat what costs you can from that mistake. I happen to be of the opinion that if the customer dines and dashes, or the waitress drops the platter, that doesn't mean the chef should get docked his pay for cooking the food. If the chef cooked it wrong, then he gets docked. So problems caused by the client's side, you bill for. A mistake that's clearly your own, you should eat. I spell this out directly to clients for example when discussing graphics. I tell them if they spell some name wrong on the paperwork they send em, I'll charge them time to fix it. If they sent it right but I transcribed it wrong, that's on me and I eat that mistake.

If the project is a completely unusable disaster, you've got to decide how much of your money you should rebate or refund. If you think you can do it right with a second try, then suggest a rebate for the expended value to date. This keeps their business with you.

How important is it to keep or end the relationship on a good note? Very: this business is driven by referrals and reputation. Just as important as a rep for doing good work is a reputation for owning up to and making right the mistakes you sometimes make. Marketing research stats show that 70 percent of customers who have a complaint will continue to do business with you, if you resolve problems in their favor. So it can pay to take an occasional hit even if it really was the customer's fault with bad prep or whatever.

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