K+BB Collective | The Designers' Corner

Apr 22 2010

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The shoe is on their foot now…Don't get stomped!

Dear Blogosphere:

What the heck is going on in the marketplace?

Clients have 75 designers and contractors to pick from and they know it. They can all perform. Well, maybe not, but they all appear as though they can and say they can. Clients are looking for a deal. So “kill the contractor” is the name of the game? Make the vendors compete until they bleed. They say to me, “Why should we pick you?” I tell them about me and how I’ll work with them, and they say, “Oh… OK, we’ll get back to you, thanks for your time” (10 years ago, they would have been offering expensive gifts if you’d even talk to them, and their question was “when?” and not “how much?”

Designers and contractors are wearing thin, in cash and patience. Everyone wants a hunk of us. The employees, charities, all the governments, insurance companies, clients, regulators and inspectors, family and friends. We try to keep up our good attitudes and cash flow and civic mindedness, but with the shoe on the client’s foot, we need to be careful.

Don’t act like you did when the work and cash were flowing heavily with easy credit and when everyone was flush. Listen but don’t kneel. You still need to get paid more than it costs, or just stay home. The guys and gals who sell themselves cheap will not be around long. Try to do what you have to, to show clients that things that are free are worth every penny. Know and watch your costs, but don’t let your service standards slip. In fact, ramp them up and do even better. And DON’T run out of cash, don’t run out of cash, don’t run out of cash!! Be ready when the shoe changes to our feet with a sharp, service-heavy organization that’s ready to grow 1/16th of an inch at a time, not fast.

Mark Brady

This entry was posted on Thursday, April 22nd, 2010 at 6:00 AM and is filed under Business. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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