Need this done urgently but it takes me ages to respond

Seen those kind of clients before? Those that say they need this and that done within a tight time frame like 1 week. And then they take 2 weeks just to respond to messages?

Aren’t they dreamy? They’re so busy and need that project done yesterday. And if possible, you should also know all the details without actually asking him.

I mean he’s a very busy person. Can’t you see that? Why would you bother him with details like how the project should be? Can’t you read his mind?

And you need to have a chat for more than 5 minutes to discuss the details? This is costing him a lot, can’t you see?

Anyway, kidding aside, I’m sure must of you old timers out there know about this kind of client. He need stuff done fast.Very fast. And because of this he might not share all the details with you. Details that might need a few more hours of work. Or details that can’t be done.

Or even better. He might share some details, you do some of the work and need a fast feedback so you know if you continue that way or not. And what does he do? He responds in 2 weeks or more, when his deadline was 1 week ago. Cool stuff! And for a project that should take 1 week you now take months and months of work to do it.

And you’d think that’s the worst case scenario? Oh, just wait. He responds after 2 weeks while you waited for a very important feedback. You could not go forward without that. And when he returns instead of giving the feedback he might start arguing with you, asking why it’s not already done.

The funny thing about that is that if you had continued 2 things would have happened:

  1. He would agree with the work and all is well.(Best case scenario)
  2. He would start asking for modifications. And if you dare ask for money for what you already did he would just ask why didn’t you wait for his feedback.

Now, what do I do with this kind of clients? Well for starters, I ask for the money upfront. If it’s on upwork then I wait for the milestone to be funded.

Also I ask upfront how available he will be and I let him know that the project will be finished on time but it will depend a lot of how fast he is going to respond. A lot of projects took more time than necessary because of clients responding late.

And the last thing I do is listen to my instinct. I don’t know how, but usually when there’s something wrong I just feel it. I’m not sure if it’s because of my experience or it’s just something general but I just know if it’s going to end well or not.

What about you? What do you guys do with such clients?

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