12 Tips for Maintaining Healthy Client Relationships

I have heard some interesting stories recently about designers in our industry.  Unfortunately, they paint a very unhappy picture.  The stories range from doing exactly the opposite of what they were told to getting upset when the client disagreed with them.

As a designer, I understand feeling passionate about a design and how disappointing it is to have that design rejected.  I also understand that I am not always right and if a design is rejected by one client it may be fitting for a different client.  It’s important to know and understand that a rejected design isn’t the client rejecting you.   Below is a list of things we do to help maintain a healthy relationship with our clients.

  1. Listen
  2. Offer professional opinions
  3. Listen
  4. Communicate clearly and often
  5. Listen
  6. Involve the client in the process
  7. Listen
  8. Understand that our clients are experts, too, and you can learn a lot from them
  9. Listen
  10. Understand that disapproval of our concepts isn’t a direct reflection of their opinion of us
  11. Listen
  12. Show respect. Yes, they hired us for our professionalism and experience but we can be fired for shoving it in their face.  At the end of the day, they are paying us.

Please, share your tips for maintaining healthy client relationships in the comments below.