I am up to my ears lately because I have succeeded in attracting an abundance of dream clients: Creative, innovative, deeply thinking, open to possibility—Ayeee!!
The past two weeks have mostly been spent creating flowcharts, communicating, adjusting flowcharts and communicating some more. For once, I’ve been thankful for the boring little projects one can sweep together quickly, fold into a zip file, and Send.
Of course I love those dream clients.
That’s why I call them Dream Clients.
And as I had hoped, they’ve got me thinking. At the moment, I’m thinking about how to encourage all this creativity and innovation I’m deluged with, and still get the work done.
My key tool is what I call “mirroring”: I mirror the client’s ideas back to them, but in as organized a way as possible. Mostly, that involves a flowchart, a short list of project deliverables, and a rough list of tasks.
Unfortunately, all that accomplishes at the moment is a friendly letter thanking me for clarifying thoughts, and an inspired, stream-of-consciousness fountain of new ideas.
I’m convinced there is a way to encourage creative clients, but still finish projects and make a living. At the moment, however, there’s such an abundant flow of creative thought, I feel lifted off my feet, and the solid ground of specific, productive tasks.
Let’s trust that all is well, and let that creative flow do its thing for a bit. We’ll keep track of hours, and add emphasis (big, bold, red letters) to a note I included in a recent project estimate:
Planning, project management:
This includes charting the site, which I’ve already done, as well as correspondence, distilling meeting notes, creating and keeping to schedules, and confirming the best software resources for your requested features. Keep in mind that—particularly, but not only once we get going—changing feature requests means more time spent in this department!
Hm… should I say “more time and money”? What are the pros and cons of making that crystal clear, down-to-earth statement? It’s certainly costing me both time and money. But there is also something else I gain when I do a little flagrant, time-wasting Dreaming.
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