Whenever I am considered for a new project I aim to be honest with the client right from the beginning, just recently though this has started to work against me and I’m not sure that I’m comfortable with the alternative.
Back in November I met with a potential client to discus a new website. It sounded like a nice project with good opportunity for a little creative freedom, pretty much the the exact kind of project that I look for. Just one problem, the pre-Christmas deadline. I told the client that I didn’t think it was achievable and as a result I didn’t get the project. The email I received notifying me of this stated that the site must be live before Christmas and this was the decisive factor against using me. I couldn’t argue with that, I didn’t believe that I could meet the deadline.
As Christmas approached I was busy with other projects and somehow squeezing in my Christmas shopping too, but it occurred to me that the client’s site would be live and I was keen to see the end result (I think you know what’s coming). I quickly typed the URL into Chrome and sure enough the site wasn’t live. I have to admit I wasn’t hugely surprised, this has happened to me quite a few times over the past few years.
I have to admit, I’m not entirely sure on how to avoid this in future. I’m not at all comfortable telling a client that I can complete a project within their deadline if I don’t believe that I can. So for now, I’ll stick to being honest and miss out.