There’s a difference between being enjoyable to work with and being “nice.” Being nice means worrying about keeping up the appearance of harmony at the expense of being straightforward and fully engaged. Sometimes you need to tell a client they’re making the wrong call. Part of client services is being able to do that without coming off as a dick. But being afraid to do it because you’re too invested in being “nice” is worse than being a dick.
Mike Monteiro, Design Is A Job
That’s one of my favourite quotes from the excerpt of Mike Monteiro’s new book on Getting Clients.
For those unaware of who Mike Monteiro is, he is the co-founder of Mule Design which is much more than a design firm (branding, marketing, audio/visual production, and more) based out of San Francisco. Their list of clients are impressive, to say the least: GigaOm, Mint, AllThingsD, and more.
They have recently expanded to start Mule Radio Syndicate with the best tagline ever: From Our Ass To Your Ears. Their shows include one of my all-time favourites, Let’s Make Mistakes, Salt & Fat and Hour of Pour.
If you’re in the mood for some podcasts of a different flavour than the norm, check them out.
As for the book, it is geared towards designers (freelance or small shops), but I am sure a lot of his message will be well received by anyone involved with the service industry. The eBook is $9.00, paperback is $18.00 + shipping, both priced quite reasonably. You can find a list of sellers at Amazon.
As soon as I have finished reading it, I will provide more insight into its contents.
Be sure to check Mike out on Twitter: @mike_ftw