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Question:

I have a new client and it looks like it’s going to be a good job but now that she has hired me, she is sending me emails to look at stuff (that we don’t need) on the internet every day. This can take hours to do and it is making me crazy. What do I do?

Answer:

This problem is a sign of the times! Everyone has had a client do this to them. Remember, the client is excited about the project; she thinks she is being helpful and she wants to share and connect with you… but it does take too much time.

This is, of course, a boundary issue.  You will need to tell her firmly what is acceptable. Reply to her email and kindly tell her that you would love to look at all of this but you just don’t have the time. Also point out that you don’t think she wants to use the (expensive) design time she is paying you for to do this.

If it doesn’t stop, send her a bill immediately for 2 hours of time to look at internet products. I guarantee that will stop the email shopping requests immediately.

In the future, add 2 hours of time to look at internet products that the client has found into your Letter of Agreement. This will immediately put a limit on the emails… or better yet… she will object to the extra 2 hours in the LOA, and you can delete them. This way she knows she can’t send you ANY emails to look at things.

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