When to kiss off a client

Keep an eye out for an overconfident client.

Overconfidence causes them to blindly and systematically overestimate their knowledge and abilities. They’ll believe themselves to be masters at anything they touch They’ll hop, skimp and jump from project to project with wild-eyed optimism.

It’s the kind of optimism that will load absurd expectations on you. Expectations you’re not going to be able to meet even if all the stars align and gold start falling from the sky. (It’s the kind of optimism that leads governments to believe that wars are quickly winnable and projects will come in on budget despite statistics predicting exactly the opposite.)

This overconfidence will be charming and invigorating in the beginning. But will quickly turn when you cannot make the impossible possible.

Explaining how and why absurd expectations cannot be met will fall on deaf ears. You will be held responsible for not making a client’s ridiculous dreams come true.

Such a client is convinced they know everything and therefore can do no wrong. Even worse they believe they’re always right.

Why? How? Usually with a sense of self-righteous authority because they’ve always done it like that. This will be their tantric logic. Despite what they’ve always no longer producing the desired result.

Of course, the logical thing to do is the opposite of what they’ve always done. Something new.

But their overconfidence cannot be questioned or it will crack. And with it, they’re sense of self and self-worth.

Far easier to blame you than face the inevitable hubris.

Kiss them off before that happens.

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