“Customers don’t expect you to be perfect.
They do expect you to fix things when they go wrong.”
–Donald Porter, V.P. British Airways

Relationships between Vancouver web designers and clients aren’t always easy. We must set reasonable goals and ethical boundaries. We must listen well. Ultimately we have to work at it to win at it. Sometimes no matter how hard we work at it, it doesn’t seem to work out. What can we do if we want to build a better business relationship?

Set clear expectations. Communicate regularly. Stay focused. What happens when all of that has been done, but we still can’t see eye-to-eye? Some of the world’s most courageous thinkers inspire us to work better together. Here’s what they say (and do)…

Focus on the outcome, and turn those obstacles into opportunities.

“To conquer frustration, one must remain
intensely focused on the outcome, not the obstacles.”
—T.F. Hodge

We hate obstacles. If you’ve ever seen those swinging sandbags on an obstacle course or driven through the Massey Tunnel after a hog escapes from the back of a truck, you know how important it is to stay focused. Focus helps you finish the race without injury and bring home the bacon without hitting someone else’s pig along the way. Keep your mind on your goal—winning the race or getting home safely—and you’re halfway there.

Be flexible, and don’t be afraid to try something different in round two.

“It is not the strongest of the species that survives,
nor the most intelligent,
but the one most responsive to change.”
—Charles Darwin

Flexibility in website development keeps things flowing. Once initial first-round designs are shared, that preference for a pale blue color scheme must be known. As we move forward, we discover each other’s tastes, preferences and even our ways of reasoning. It’s great when we meet such discoveries with open minds and, if the situation calls for it, open arms. Try this: imagine what a little change can do, rather than what it can’t do.

Forget everyone else’s site and create something true to your business.

“if you’re true to yourself,
you’re going to be true to everyone else.”
—John Wooden

Often the biggest challenges that exist between you, me and the Web isn’t what we’re planning to do, but what everyone else is already doing. Sometimes we get so caught up in what works well for others, we lose sight of what can work better for us. If we refocus on what’s right in front of us, we’ll build a brave new online presence. I promise.

While it isn’t always appropriate to sit down with a pitcher of lemonade whenever layouts produce lemons, especially when it’s cold outside and there’s work left to do, it’s always good to mind the goals, mend our grievances and make something better.

Each time we sit down together, we have an opportunity to make your web system better than we ever thought possible. If you’d like to build something like that, let’s talk.