The Business of Freelancing, Episode 51: Bryce Bladon on Avoiding “Clients From Hell”


Today I am talking with Bryce Bladon. He is the curator of “clients from hell”. Today we talk about everything from qualifying new clients to setting expectations. He runs a website whose sole purpose is to showcase crazy clients. We both feel that sometimes we can do things a bit differently to help avoid having clients from hell. So the theme of this show is to have fewer clients from hell.

Bryce has been involved with Clients from Hell, a collection of anonymously submitted tales of woe, since 2009. These tales are from designers and anyone who deals with clients. Today we are going to talk about how freelancers can avoid getting these bad clients. We want high quality clients who respect us.

Today’s topics include:

  • New freelancers run the risk of getting bad clients by not qualifying clients and knowing when to say no to a potential client
  • Clients that aren’t a good fit need to be weeded out
  • Sometimes people create crappy client situations for themselves
  • Bad client experiences are usually the result of bad client communication or unrealistic expectations
  • Set expectations on how to bill and what to expect up front
  • Qualify yourself by asking what kind of work, people and projects do you want to work with
  • Does the client trust me, how much education do I need to give them
  • Have regard for yourself and your time
  • If a client doesn’t respect you and doesn’t appreciate what you deliver, they won’t be a good fit
  • Structured business processes can be used to sell, qualify, onboard, communicate, and follow-up with clients

Resources and links:

Clients from Hell

Bryce Bladon Website

Twitter @BryceBladon

Project Prescription Paul Jarvis Client Qualifying Tool

Hell to Pay

“I still can't believe you don't charge for this course.”
Struggling to find and close projects? Need some help in figuring out how to charge what you're worth? Join more than 25,000 freelancers who have transformed the way they sell and pitch clients.
I can't thank you enough for everything you're doing to share your knowledge and experience with us. I've been reading and listening to a lot of "gurus" out there and often times feel like their approaches are a bit too gimmicky or lack what I appreciate about your content the most: genuinely caring about the client's needs. I read every word of every lesson many times over and I could truly feel my mindset shifting.
Sam F., joined the course April 18, 2018
Join 50,000+ freelancers who get early access to new articles, guides, updates, and more.