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The worst client you can imagine

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Active Member
Renata D Member Since: Jun 12, 2020
1 of 12

Hi, I am super new to Upwork and I guess Its just my luck - I got the worst client in the world to be my first client. I accepted to do logo, watermark, landing page and signature for almost free just because Im very new here(I have 10 years of experiance in Graphic Design).
They blackmail me with not accepting the payment request submition with endlessss revisions. So far we did over 30 revisions, and its all just- Hmm, I wonder how its in this colour, and how its will look if... THEY HAVE NO IDEA what they want and now demending 5 different styles of the logo, 5 different watermarks - all for the same price and due day is today. Aaa and they didnt answer my messags 3 days. 
I dont want to cancel because I have already sent them so many files and they took so much of my time - basicly for free! 
What kind of protection there is here for freelacers? This is pure torture.

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Community Guru
Martina P Member Since: Jul 11, 2018
2 of 12

How do you expect upwork to protect you when you are basically working for free? Upwork is not the referee between you and your client.

So you learned the hard way that cheap clients are the worst, but you can recover from this. You can end the contract at any time, if there is no money paid, the client can't leave public feedback. (Not saying you should do that, it's your business decision) It's not great for your future rating to have a no money paid contract, but it's not the end of the world.

You should never feel blackmailed by a client, but you always need to stay professional and make clear what you will do for which amount. There are many good clients here, it's a common newbie mistake to take what you can get without any thought to possible bad outcomes. Which often is the case. 

 

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Nichola L Member Since: Mar 13, 2015
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3 of 12

Renata D wrote:

Hi, I am super new to Upwork and I guess Its just my luck - I got the worst client in the world to be my first client. I accepted to do logo, watermark, landing page and signature for almost free just because Im very new here(I have 10 years of experiance in Graphic Design).
They blackmail me with not accepting the payment request submition with endlessss revisions. So far we did over 30 revisions, and its all just- Hmm, I wonder how its in this colour, and how its will look if... THEY HAVE NO IDEA what they want and now demending 5 different styles of the logo, 5 different watermarks - all for the same price and due day is today. Aaa and they didnt answer my messags 3 days. 
I dont want to cancel because I have already sent them so many files and they took so much of my time - basicly for free! 
What kind of protection there is here for freelacers? This is pure torture.


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You are not in a very good place and you don't appear to have a reasonable client.

 

I think one thing you could do, is to refuse to do any more work (politely) until you have been paid for what you were asked to do. 

 

You will have to hold your nerve, because the client could then demand a refund, which would mean a dispute and possibly arbitration.  I hope it doesn't come to that, but don't give in just yet. 

 

 

View solution in original post

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Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
4 of 12

You need to set expectations at the outset and clearly spell out how many versions of anything are included.

 

When you do that, and the client asks for unreasonable changes (not quick tweaks) you can say "Sure, we can redo it, I can get that done for you by tomorrow, the cost would be $ XX

 

Then the client can decide just how badly they want it... 

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Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
5 of 12

Renata:

You are new, so you are going through a stage in your Upwork freelancing life cycle that MANY of us go through.

 

I am an experienced freelancer here. I dispense a lot of advice. But early in my time here, I had a couple of experiences very close to yours.

 

The problem is that you did not know how to properly word your fixed-price contract agreement to specify how many revisions, or to specify zero revisions. PLUS, you did not know how to prevent scope creep and put a stop to client change requests.

 

Upwork can't do those things for you. You need to learn to do these things yourself. Come to the Forum and ask for advice. We can help.

 

You refer to this client as the worst ever. The truth is that a client who does not know what he wants can be a very good client, a very profitable client. As long as the correct contract model is used: an hourly contract.

 

If you have a client who starts asking for revisions or changes that are out of scope, then the key is moving them as quickly as possible to an hourly contract.

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Community Guru
Nichola L Member Since: Mar 13, 2015
6 of 12

Preston H wrote:

Renata:

You are new, so you are going through a stage in your Upwork freelancing life cycle that MANY of us go through.

 

I am an experienced freelancer here. I dispense a lot of advice. But early in my time here, I had a couple of experiences very close to yours.

 

The problem is that you did not know how to properly word your fixed-price contract agreement to specify how many revisions, or to specify zero revisions. PLUS, you did not know how to prevent scope creep and put a stop to client change requests.

 

Upwork can't do those things for you. You need to learn to do these things yourself. Come to the Forum and ask for advice. We can help.

 

You refer to this client as the worst ever. The truth is that a client who does not know what he wants can be a very good client, a very profitable client. As long as the correct contract model is used: an hourly contract.

 

If you have a client who starts asking for revisions or changes that are out of scope, then the key is moving them as quickly as possible to an hourly contract.

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Preston, 

 

You can't switch from fixed-price to hourly, once a contract has been confirmed. I very much doubt that the OP's client would be willing to pay and then start another hourly contract with the tracker. Your insistence on this is not always helpful, and in this case, is  misleading.  


 

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Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
7 of 12

Nichola, I am not sure what you mean.

 

I often switch clients from fixed-price to hourly.

 

If a client can't handle switched-price contracts, then a freelancer needs to either stop working for them or switch them to hourly contracts.

 

A certain percentage of clients do not comprehend fixed-price contracts and will never be able to be trained on how to use them appropriately. But many of those can become perfectly fine hourly contract clients.

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Nichola L Member Since: Mar 13, 2015
8 of 12

Preston H wrote:

Nichola, I am not sure what you mean.

 

I often switch clients from fixed-price to hourly.

 

If a client can't handle switched-price contracts, then a freelancer needs to either stop working for them or switch them to hourly contracts.

 

A certain percentage of clients do not comprehend fixed-price contracts and will never be able to be trained on how to use them appropriately. But many of those can become perfectly fine hourly contract clients.


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I don't know how you manage to do that because the rules and regs say you can't: 

 

"It is not possible to convert a contract from hourly to fixed-price (or vice versa) after hiring. If you are considering this, be sure to come to an agreement with your freelancer on the new payment terms before making any changes. 

To change the type of contract, simply end the job and rehire the freelancer, changing the offer terms to an hourly or fixed-price contract, as appropriate. If the current contract is fixed-price, you should complete the current milestone before ending the contract. You'll both have 14 days to leave feedback on the ended contract."

 

 

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Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
9 of 12

Nichola: That is correct.

 

To change a fixed-price client to an hourly client, a freelancer has the client close any remaining fixed-price contract and begin using hourly contracts from that point on.

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Nichola L Member Since: Mar 13, 2015
10 of 12

Preston H wrote:

Nichola: That is correct.

 

To change a fixed-price client to an hourly client, a freelancer has the client close any remaining fixed-price contract and begin using hourly contracts from that point on.


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Quite. This would not help the OP in this case.