I let go of a client today. I was not giving her what she wanted as a designer and rather than waste her time and mine further, I let her know what my decision was, told her I was refunding her money in full and that was it. She accepted it and thanked me for my efforts. No hard feelings.

Before anyone rushes and says I am a big boy, so I clearly do not need the money, so I refunded her; that is a story for a Nollywood Home Video. There is no such thing as too much business or too much money, gotten the right way. I need the money. I have bills to pay. This need however must be guided with common sense. I looked at it wisely and rather than continue and not get any headway, this was the right choice.

As a designer and as a service provider, do not be afraid to let a client go. I know the common lie is to tell you that if the client goes, you have lost twenty others. Story. It all depends on HOW they left.
If they left calmly and after a frank talk about what is going wrong, they will not only respect you for it, when they speak of it, they will maturely explain your position, why it did not work out and what you did. THAT is good business sense. Learn it.

Rather than let the relationship degrade and get to abusive words on either or both sides, ask yourself if you can and should continue. If you cannot, then let go. You will not get the money you want yes, but there are other clients. And, as I often tell young designers, the thing you want most (even if you do not realize it) is to have peace of mind while you work.
Yes, you want cash too, but the client has to be happy and satisfied. You are the one who has to make that happen and if it ain't happening, you have to let them go. Some of them, anyway. That is why I said assess it rightly.

I am just recovering from being ill. In the process I have had to design and redesign for her and a ton of other clients when my Drive crashed. So, these past few weeks have not exactly been the easiest for me. I am now entering a phase at work where some serious things are to be done. I envision lots of very late night home going.

This is not the period to take on any work that has to have me going over it, again and again. I will lose sleep and energy in the process, and those designs when tallied could have been given to other clients and the service paid for. Are you getting what I mean by assessment now? Do it, when you need to. You will be the better for it.
There are also some clients you need to fire because their wahala is too much. They are abusive and never listen. They think you are a slave because they pay you, or they sabotage all your efforts and work, leaving you frustrated and angry. Fire them quickly.

Do not let some human being who does not understand that people are different and you cannot please anyone sell you that big lie that if you lose a client the problem is you. Some people are their own problem, and everyone is happy when they leave. They are bitter, rude and very unreasonable. Let me not share some horror stories of my design journey over the years.

Money is useless if you cannot enjoy it. By the time those kinds of clients start giving you hell, you lose weight and sleep, the money they pay will not bring it back. I once joked on Facebook that unless a client is paying me Three Million for a design or set of designs, their money is not enough for some kinds of drama.

 Contributor: Onuorah Ikechukwu is a Graphic Designer by profession, and a writer by hobby. He loves putting words across when it comes to design. And, bet me, you can never go wrong reading his write-ups. For more details you can get in touch with him on Facebook.

Felix Obinna

Creative Visual + UI Designer • Awesome Dude. Curator/Writer at cgminds .