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Negative Review Threat Cancer - Stop it Already

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Community Guru
Scott B Member Since: Nov 20, 2015
1 of 11

Fear of the potential for a negative review, while far from new on this site, is a cancer that is going to kill your business and prevent you from achieving meaningful success. Every day new threads in some numbers will show up here with folks pondering whether they should offer a refund or in some way compromise their business out of fear that the client may post a negative review. This really must stop. Just stop it. The irony here is that your response to do something contrary to good business will actually spell your demise faster and more assuredly than the potential  negative review will ever do. 

 

If you are truly complicit in a negative outcome then by all means do what is necessary to set the situation right. There are times when a refund or some other remuneration is the right and just thing to do. However, the vast majority of what I read is not based on this but rather an altogether too willing attitude to give in lest you face the dreaded negative review. Once that behavior get started it will be tough to stop. You will have established a willingness to succumb to that fear and as a result will find yourself in more and more situations where doing something contrary to good business will, in your mind, prevent that bad review. A vicious death spiral for your business if there ever was one.

 

I don't really care what line of work you  are in. I don't care what part of world you are from. I don't care what language you speak or if you grew up in a wealthy home or on the streets. If you perform meaningful work you perform meaningful work. You're work is not more or less meaningful because you come from a wealthy country versus a less wealthy one. It is not more or less meaningful because you are a certain gender, ethnicity, went to college or lack a formal education. Why do I bring this up? I think there is a good portion (no idea of percentage) who engage in this practice due to a lack of self-worth or by providing an excuse about being a certain person in a certain part of the world, etc. Stop it. Quality work is quality work and is not degraded by personal circumstance. Lose the excuses. If you did what was asked, get paid for it. Fallback on your personal circumstances and forever be enslaved by them. 

 

If you won't protect your business for yourself, at least think of others on this platform. Giving into the negative review threat plants a seed in a certain segment of the clientele here. This is a seed that metastasizes into believing this behavior is right and can be carried forth to another freelancer. We don't need that kind of trash on this platform. So again if you won't do it for your own business at least think of other people and what kind of platform you are complicit in building.

 

UW is not alone in facilitating reviews. The Internet is the great review machine and I don't need to recount all of the websites that let people review one another. Get over it. Also, get over the "private feedback". If you don't like it then by all means address it here, with UW directly or by leaving  this platform. All acceptable behaviors. Do NOT deal with it by giving into "fate" and blaming it for why you need to behave in a way that runs contrary to good business. It's a cop out; a lame excuse to blame others and cede control of your business to the unseen dark forces out to to make your life difficult. Stop it.  

 

The next time a refund or something similar enters your mind ask yourself one question. Is it the right thing to do? If yes then go forward with the notion that you are running a good ethical business. If no, then shut down the negative useless urges that are scaring you into doing it. When someone else posts a thread here about in some way giving in, please do your part to help them think through whether they are doing it for the right reasons.  If not, tell them to stop it. 

 

 

Community Leader
Md. Morshed A Member Since: Apr 3, 2018
2 of 11

I received a 4.33 review yesterday.. my JSS is now 95%...

Waiting to see, what can it do to my reputation..

(I did 46 jobs in my upwork career and 4 of them have 4.70 score and all others are 5.00)

 

The story behind this was.. 

 

# Wednesday, September 26, 2018 10:02 PM - Client sent me the offer.
# Wednesday, September 26, 2018 10:10 PM - I accepted the offer. (8 minutes later)
# Wednesday, September 26, 2018 11:59 PM - I finished the work. (1 hour 49 minutes later)


# Friday, September 28, 2018 3:05 AM - Client reviewed my work and claimed, I didn't finished it in time and ask for some edits. (1 day 3 hours later)

 

# Friday, September 28, 2018 10:59 AM - I responded to my clients message. (8 hours later)
# Friday, September 28, 2018 11:19 AM - I edited the file for my client. (20 minutes later)

# Friday, September 28, 2018 8:02 PM - Client reviewed and ask for more edits (9 hours later)
# Saturday, September 29, 2018 1:07 PM - I edited and submitted the file again (21 hours later)

 

# Monday, October 8, 2018 10:13 PM - Client reviewed my work and ask for more edits (9 days later)

And sent me this msg,

 

**Edited for Community Guidelines**

 

Is that a threat? Idk...

 

FYI - Client ask me to change the date only, that means my client is going to use this design for another date. And I think my client already used it for the first date. Whatever...


# Tuesday, October 9, 2018 12:53 AM - I did those edits and submitted again (2 hours 40 minutes later)

# Tuesday, October 16, 2018 7:26 PM - Client reviewed my work and ended the contract (5 days later)

 

My questuion is, how in the world I missed the deadline, when I finished it within 2 hours of hiring?

Psst: the deadline was September 27.

Community Guru
Melanie H Member Since: Nov 2, 2017
3 of 11

Md. Morshed A wrote:

I received a 4.33 review yesterday.. my JSS is now 95%...

Waiting to see, what can it do to my reputation..

(I did 46 jobs in my upwork career and 4 of them have 4.70 score and all others are 5.00)

 

The story behind this was.. 

 

# Wednesday, September 26, 2018 10:02 PM - Client sent me the offer.
# Wednesday, September 26, 2018 10:10 PM - I accepted the offer. (8 minutes later)
# Wednesday, September 26, 2018 11:59 PM - I finished the work. (1 hour 49 minutes later)


# Friday, September 28, 2018 3:05 AM - Client reviewed my work and claimed, I didn't finished it in time and ask for some edits. (1 day 3 hours later)

 

# Friday, September 28, 2018 10:59 AM - I responded to my clients message. (8 hours later)
# Friday, September 28, 2018 11:19 AM - I edited the file for my client. (20 minutes later)

# Friday, September 28, 2018 8:02 PM - Client reviewed and ask for more edits (9 hours later)
# Saturday, September 29, 2018 1:07 PM - I edited and submitted the file again (21 hours later)

 

# Monday, October 8, 2018 10:13 PM - Client reviewed my work and ask for more edits (9 days later)

And sent me this msg,

 

**Edited for Community Guidelines**

 

Is that a threat? Idk...

 

FYI - Client ask me to change the date only, that means my client is going to use this design for another date. And I think my client already used it for the first date, because client told me to create 3 different files and she is asking me to edit only a single one. Whatever...


# Tuesday, October 9, 2018 12:53 AM - I did those edits and submitted again (2 hours 40 minutes later)

# Tuesday, October 16, 2018 7:26 PM - Client reviewed my work and ended the contract (5 days later)

 

My questuion is, how in the world I missed the deadline, when I finished it within 2 hours of hiring?

Psst: the deadline was September 27.


Yes, that is feedback manipulation. Did these messages go through your UW Job room? Report this. 

Community Guru
Will L Member Since: Jul 9, 2015
4 of 11

Freelancers who rely on Upwork for a significant portion of their income are not going to risk their income by standing up to abusive clients.

 

Better that Upwork should start providing more information about clients so freelancers can see if a client has a pattern of such abuse, including on what percentage of their Upwork projects has a client:

 

Requested/received a refund

Required/requested mediation

Required/requested arbitration

Cancelled projects once started

 

I’d also like to see each client’s average public and private ratings of freelancers on all their Upwork projects.

 

Resetting the JSS system so that three stars is average, rather than pretending the impossible (that everyone is above average and five stars is a minimum acceptable rating) would also reduce the power of abusive clients who use their rating power to get more than they pay for from freelancers.

Community Guru
Kim F Member Since: Aug 26, 2015
5 of 11

"Freelancers who rely on Upwork for a significant portion of their income are not going to risk their income by standing up to abusive clients."

 

Speak for yourself. You risk your income (and more) by not  standing up to abusive clients. 

 

And yes, I've had low feedback, plus threats of low feedback, implied and explicit. More than once, standing my ground has resulted in the client backing down and posting good feedback. I've also had surreally unreasonable demands and complaints - the winner must be the client who complained I wasn't available over a weekend when I was hospitalised, even though the project was completed nearly a week early.  And I always make it clear that I'm not available at weekends, unless explicitly agreed I should be. 

 

So much hinges on the relationship between individuals that it isn't always possible to predict when a client will turn out to be a nightmare, no matter what information is available. 

 

The power abusive clients have is what you choose to give to them.

Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
6 of 11

Kim F wrote:

The power abusive clients have is what you choose to give to them.


 Exactly.

 

Managing contracts and clients (including the difficult ones) is the No 1 skill of a freelancer.

I don't let clients push me around any more than I let anyone else push me around. It all boils down to choosing clients carefully and then managing the contract.

If the above is done right almost all problems can get solved before they result in bad feedback or refund requests or disputes.

Community Guru
Will L Member Since: Jul 9, 2015
7 of 11

A freelancer's Job One is to have the skills to fulfill the client's clear requirements, as agreed before beginning the project, and to apply those skills to the client's project.

 

All the customer management skills in the world won't cover over a freelancer over-promising and not delivering the agreed work product on the agreed timeline.

 

Blaming any significant problems I might have with a particular client on other freelancers' activities would be scapegoating. The real problem for freelancers who have regular problems with well-chosen clients is easily found in the nearest mirror.

Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
8 of 11

Will L wrote: The real problem for freelancers who have regular problems with well-chosen clients is easily found in the nearest mirror.

 

Edited on the off-chance that I am misunderstanding who Will is blaming for what ...

Community Leader
Md. Morshed A Member Since: Apr 3, 2018
9 of 11

Petra R wrote: 

Managing contracts and clients (including the difficult ones) is the No 1 skill of a freelancer.

 


 What if you trying to manage someone who don't wanted to understand but you are already involved deeply. What if client finds out that, this is his fault and what if he don't wanted to take any blame for this and committed to submit the review intentionally to cover his track. What will you do? Whatever you do, I think you are going to receive the bad review anyway. What is your point of view? Please...

Thanks...

Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
10 of 11

Md. Morshed A wrote:

Petra R wrote: 

Managing contracts and clients (including the difficult ones) is the No 1 skill of a freelancer.

 


 What if you trying to manage someone who don't wanted to understand but you are already involved deeply. What if client finds out that, this is his fault and what if he don't wanted to take any blame for this and committed to submit the review intentionally to cover his track. What will you do?


 Fire the client.

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