Lately I have become completely enamored with the website Clients from Hell. It is “a collection of anonymously contributed client horror stories from designers” and let me tell you — it so accurately portrays what we designers deal with on a daily basis!
I know I’m biased because I am in a creative profession, but I do feel like people in other professions don’t quite deal with the same type of encounters that creatives do. Sure, there are crazy requests that all people get at their jobs, but would someone ever ask a doctor to treat an illness for free with the promise of it being a great learning experience for them? Would you ever tell a builder how to frame a house even though you have no construction experience? Could anyone, with a clear conscience, ask a fireman to put out a fire in half the time (and, in turn, only pay him half of his salary)? I know that what I do may seem like fluff to some people, but it is a job — it took years of education and experience, and it is how I earn a living.
I, fortunately, have never dealt with anything quite as bad as some of the personal accounts on Clients from Hell (for instance, I have never been told “by the way, I can’t afford to pay you for this job, but you will be paid in karma — which is so much better and more permanent anyway”)… but, then again, I’ve got a ways to go in my career ;-) I’m sure I’ll encounter some doozies!
What is the craziest thing someone has ever asked of you at your job?