I have a new local client who simply won't stop calling me during my office hours.
I do attend to calls of all my clients. But he calls me and discusses everything about the project over phone only, which adds to confusion and I also tend to forget some of them after a few hours because I am working on multiple projects at the moment and not just his project.
He spends 2 to 3 hours only discussing, arguing, ignoring the technical suggestions from my end and only explaining his business model. I clearly and politely told him that due to my workload it is not possible to attend such lengthy phone calls. I also told him that we can use other better ways to communicate and discuss details, such as IMs, WhatsApp, email and anything else which I can refer to and properly work on it or give him suggestions and estimates.
However, he is only seeing his side and keeps calling me and spends most of my time and as a result, I can't attend other important phone calls or give time to my work.
He is also not paying much. I have offered him the price based on his budget but he is simply bargaining and asking to add more and more features to add within the budget.
When I am telling him to consider my points and increase budget because of new requirements, he is threatening me with my calls, which he always records, although I have never said or promised to do anything which is outside the scope or agreement of my project, even through calls. I have all agreements ready for it also.
How do I deal with him? I am thinking of getting a little blunt with him. Will that be a good thing to do at this stage? It's harming my other projects and I am having to give just too much time attending his calls, and also listening to his threats and bargaining, demands.44Nil
"I'm sorry to cut this short, but I need to attend to other things. We'll speak again later. Thanks."
If you let someone run over you, they will continue to do so. Take control of your own business.
If it were me, considering everything that you've told us, I would tell the client that I can no longer perform work for him and I would terminate the relationship.
Remember, client is always right and you can't make any argument. Just simply share that
it's not possible for you to remember all things what he/she share over the phone. If he/she share it with you over email then you can check them easily and for any help you will poke him/her.
Hopefully, it will work for you in your future.
Bill him for the hours you spend on the phone. Those are consulting hours. No further work will proceed until the account is brought current. All future phone conversations will also be billed. I went from disliking these type of clients to loving them. we could spend 12 hours on the phone for all I care. I have a Bluetooth so I can multitask and they get to tell me about there good old days. It's an expensive form of therapy but hey I'm here for my clients :-)
You need to take control of this and nip it in the bud. If they refuse to pay and they continue to call after you have laid down the law most smartphones these days come with some sort of blocking feature built-in. It will restore your sanity.
© 2012 - Nathan Osman - [About]