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304 votes
Accepted

Client wants to reduce hourly rate at the start of a new project

First, if you worked 53 hours, you need to bill for 53. The client is getting the value of 10 extra hours, and you're giving it away for nothing? Don't do that any more. Second, "budget problems" ...
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  • 35.3k
254 votes
Accepted

At delivery time, client criticises the lack of some features that weren't written on my quote. How to react?

This is simple, get payment on what was contracted before doing any more. If they want EFGHIJKL then give them a quote on it. This is the professional way to do things. If you do EFG before getting ...
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  • 197k
235 votes
Accepted

Angry email from customer insisting he didn't get a refund

First thing to do is double check and make certain that you issued the refund on your end. You say that his account says he has been refunded, but also go and find the actual bank transaction to be ...
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  • 29.7k
215 votes

I'm being blamed for not responding to an email from a client that was directly addressed to coworker

Ask your boss: "How do you want me to respond to e-mails when I am only CC'd?". I do not think you did anything wrong, but you can reach a more effective solution to the real problem by putting all ...
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206 votes
Accepted

Turned down a client after accepting dinner, how could I have handled this better?

The client acted poorly. You did what any potential hire is expected to do. In business, taking candidates out to lunch or dinner is common, and acts as an incentive that gives the employer an ...
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  • 24.9k
193 votes
Accepted

What to do when during a meeting client's people start to (physically) fight with each other?

Unless you are a supervisor of someone involved (which you are not), your role is to provide physical security (which it is not), or someone is at risk of severe personal harm (discretionary): DO NOT ...
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154 votes

How to return a fake watch "gifted" by a client

Just take the watch. Refusing it is a huge insult to the client... even if they don't know you refused it. The proper behavior is decline at first, then graciously accept the gift when pressed. Trying ...
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  • 7,117
150 votes

How do we improve the relationship with a client software team that performs poorly and is becoming less collaborative?

Please don't mislead yourself, you are nothing more than an external contractor to the company. You are NOT part of the company, so there is no legal or moral reason to grant you anything more than ...
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  • 1,353
150 votes

How might I avoid significantly overestimating the time required to deliver a potential client's software project?

I estimated this would take one month, At this point into your text I was fully prepared to tell you how ridiculously short that timeframe is to develop an app on your own that does this. But it ...
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  • 110k
148 votes

How to politely say "I don't want to work for someone from XY country"?

Don't explain. Don't justify yourself. People decline job opportunities all the time. It's not a big deal. Do you think that a potential employer will tell you the truth if they decide not to hire ...
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144 votes

How to deal with a client who has little idea what his employees are doing?

If John asks you to go and deal with something for Alice, when you succeed you don't just walk away and assume Alice will tell John, especially if you're going to be invoicing for that item separately....
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138 votes

Should I report it to my manager that the client's security didn't help (eg show me around) like my instructions said they would?

There are two things to be mentioned here: Definitely report this, but do not appear to be finger-pointing at someone. Report the incident as it happened without blaming anyone. You can say something ...
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  • 61.2k
132 votes

Turned down a client after accepting dinner, how could I have handled this better?

It appears that you did everything that one would expect in your situation. The problem is with the other party's perception of what "Dinner" entails. It appears that to him, dinner is more of an ...
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  • 42.6k
112 votes

Forced by client to remove security feature, now client blames me for data theft

You highlighted the security concerns. Everyone was aware of what would happen. You have a paper trail. Also, most importantly, your boss will have your back. So, relax and print the documents right ...
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  • 1,259
110 votes

How to gain motivation to do "boring" work?

If work was supposed to be fun, it wouldn't be called work. I'm sorry to tell you this, but welcome to the rest of your life. You might find a work that you enjoy MOST of the time, but you very ...
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  • 5,343
108 votes
Accepted

How to tell client about having missed their deadline?

The right thing to do is to tell them as early as possible that you will be missing the deadline. The problem for the customer is usually not that you are missing the deadline. The problem is ...
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  • 151k
84 votes

Client wants me to interact with their end-customer, but through client's company email

But I feel that this arrangement of interacting in a role of "their developer" through their email (perhaps allowing their customer to assume I am an employee) may be unprofessional and ...
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83 votes
Accepted

Dealing with delayed payments for my work

we do not have any contract or anything written down on paper This is not just the context, it's part of the problem. Don't get me wrong, not every favor you do a friend should be documented. But ...
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  • 14.5k
80 votes

How to return a fake watch "gifted" by a client

First thing, talk to your boss about the situation. The best option for you is if there is a company policy that prohibits taking gifts from clients. Your boss may even be in support of you lying and ...
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  • 29.7k
76 votes

Turned down a client after accepting dinner, how could I have handled this better?

He wasted as much of your time as you did of his. Call it break-even. His disappointment at not getting you to work below your normal billing rates is his problem. Quote him a fair price at your ...
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  • 43.7k
73 votes
Accepted

How to tell a client a reported "bug" is not actually a bug, but something they need to fix themselves?

How can I tactfully, respectfully let the client know that these notes are irrelevant to me and are actually one of their member's jobs? You can try something like: "Hey, can you explain what these ...
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  • 110k
71 votes

How to return a fake watch "gifted" by a client

I suspect that your client said you could make payment plans as a joke when you thought it was too much for you to accept, but never actually expected you to make payments. For now I would put the ...
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69 votes

Client wants to reduce hourly rate at the start of a new project

I can renegotiate but this situation does not give me much security in the future. What would you do? How can I say in a professional way that I do not accept the proposal? I would refuse to ...
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  • 84.1k
65 votes

How do I decline giving potential employer my book of business?

they have requested I go through my client list with them to see crossover potential. How do I protect myself but at the same time not appear to be difficult? I am a team player, but without a ...
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65 votes

How do we improve the relationship with a client software team that performs poorly and is becoming less collaborative?

This is normal. The client doesn't have a good development team, so they contract some of the work to you. Their development team realise that you are a threat to their jobs so they have no incentive ...
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59 votes
Accepted

How to politely say "I don't want to work for someone from XY country"?

Now, how shall I decline this in polite English without being an ass, chauvinist, racist, and so on? It's unfortunate that a few bad times has soured you so much against an entire country, but if ...
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58 votes

Could Wearing My Star of David Be Bad for Career?

Whether and how you wear it should depend on the situation. High-stakes business trip to Saudi Arabia? I'd say no. Working with your peers (who know you anyway) in the home office? Probably doesn'...
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57 votes
Accepted

Customer (small non-profit social services organization) doesn't like the term "business logic"

How can I reassure her that the website I'm building won't have any "business logic"? You can't. Your client has no idea about anything technical, apparently, and you've already burned the trust ...
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  • 110k

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