REMINDER: It Isn’t Your Event, It’s Your Client’s


Showing Respect to Nature

(Image via gwaar )

I wonder if this ever happens to you… you start working for a specific client, and you have such a clear vision of what the event should look like that you catch yourself thinking, “I know best.”

This has happened to me many times, especially when I also happen to love my client and really want to put my best foot forward. Or, sometimes I design something that I think is unique and very special, but my client hates it. It took me years to learn not to take it personally.

However, at times, my fragile ego still gets hurt when a client turns his or her nose up at a design that I thought was going to revolutionize the industry. (Yes, folks, it’s true. I do think big!)

So how do I handle this? I constantly remind myself of three very
important things:

1. This is not my event. It’s my client’s event. So back off, Preston.
2. My only desire should be to understand and interpret my client’s needs. In fact, I should try to almost become him or her while we work together.
3. Even if I do not always agree with my client’s tastes, he or she is still my client.

At times, these are easier said than done. However, a client that feels heard is a happy client. In that first meeting with potential clients, I work very hard to make it clear that my only desire is to please them.

I always remind them that my first love is design and that I’ll be showing them many, many designs; I tell them that they have my full permission to hate anything. Ironically, the response I mostly get is, “You bet I’ll tell you what I hate.”

Now, here’s the big question. I have been asked this question many times, but now it’s your turn to answer:

What do you do when a client asks you to design or do something that you hate?