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Author Topic: dealing with micromanagers?  (Read 2660 times)

lowep

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dealing with micromanagers?
« on: November 14, 2013, 09:59:20 am »

so what do you do if your client is a micromanager who thinks they know your job better than you do?? take their money and do whatever they say, waste your life trying to change theirs, tell them nicely to get their greasy paws off... or post a forum thread to ask about what others do in this situation?
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Peter McLennan

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Re: dealing with micromanagers?
« Reply #1 on: November 14, 2013, 11:12:40 am »

Someone close to me is a very high up sales manager in a huge global enterprise.  His take on this is:

"The customer isn't always right, but he is always the customer"

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lowep

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Re: dealing with micromanagers?
« Reply #2 on: November 14, 2013, 12:37:07 pm »

"The customer isn't always right, but he is always the customer"

Unless of course he is not  ;D

Pulling the plug is certainly an option but maybe there is a less drastic solution?
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JoeKitchen

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Re: dealing with micromanagers?
« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2013, 01:05:20 pm »

"The customer isn't always right, but he is always the customer"

Unless of course he is not  ;D

Pulling the plug is certainly an option but maybe there is a less drastic solution?
He who pays the piper calls the tune.  

If he is a customer with a signed contract or a representative for the client, you pretty much need to shoot what he/she wants you too, or you will risk loosing the client.  There are exceptions, for instance I know another AP that was shooting for a hotel chain.  He was hired by the owners who told him to shot their hotels just like he would.  The art director for the company, who was not present for the first couple of shoot, showed up on shoot and kept on putting her opinion in on the images, which were not good.  He finally told her off, but since the clients already like what they got from the first couple, it did not matter.  

I also knew someone else who did, against his better judgement, shoot exactly what the art director of the company told him to.  He was paid and then rehired to shoot the same subject his way, and the AD was not allowed to be present on that shoot. 

If this person is not a client or representative, then they have no say.  Explain it them as nicely as you can, but be firm in your approach.  In the end, you may be classified as an "arrogant son of a bitch who is completely full of himself," which is what I was referred to by the building manager recently for a similar situation.  My client could not have cared less and thought the images were great.  
« Last Edit: November 14, 2013, 01:07:54 pm by JoeKitchen »
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jjj

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Re: dealing with micromanagers?
« Reply #4 on: November 14, 2013, 01:27:19 pm »

I did some design work for someone who admitted he know nothing about design, who then tried to tell me how to do the job. A very frustrating process for everyone.

The thing is if you are hired to do something because that is your specific skill set, then you should have some clout in the matter about that specific task. There's no point in hiring an expert and then telling them how to do things. The challenge is how to say this to the person paying you, if they are the idiot causing problems.
Hard to give any specific advice as the solution will depend entirely on the person involved.
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Harold Clark

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Re: dealing with micromanagers?
« Reply #5 on: November 14, 2013, 09:05:49 pm »

I did some design work for someone who admitted he know nothing about design, who then tried to tell me how to do the job. A very frustrating process for everyone.

The thing is if you are hired to do something because that is your specific skill set, then you should have some clout in the matter about that specific task. There's no point in hiring an expert and then telling them how to do things. The challenge is how to say this to the person paying you, if they are the idiot causing problems.
Hard to give any specific advice as the solution will depend entirely on the person involved.

This is a problem in other professions as well. My dentist tells me that because of all the expert advice on the internet now, some of his patients possess more knowledge of dentistry than he has accumulated in over thirty years of experience, and like to advise him on how to proceed with their tooth care.
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slackercruster

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Re: dealing with micromanagers?
« Reply #6 on: November 15, 2013, 05:41:08 pm »

OP...totally up to you and how much you need the $. I would tell them to go elsewhere if they are a pain. But I'm not a pro photog.
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Phil Indeblanc

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Re: dealing with micromanagers?
« Reply #7 on: November 26, 2013, 09:29:17 pm »

Quote
thinks they know your job better than you do?

Didn't you get the memo??? They can just buy a camera from Costco and do it them selves and just fix it post if need be. Hello!?!! McFly!!

Today, everyone can express themselves as artists as they truly are, since they managed to furnish a bedroom or living space all with the help of a someone who all they did was draw take art classes read everything about balance, color, linequality, textures, studied how the masters worked, etc...
But since he/she purchased it, and she was artistic enough to take good advice, he/she IS the artist!
Where have you been??!! There is nothing professional about it anymore!!! Someone give him the memo!!!

Just because some people have harmonious taste, doesn't mean it will applies to the project at hand. Let them learn that lesson on their dime.
They chose you for a reason. Perhaps you do nice work, or you were willing to do it for the price they ground you down for.
If he/she knows what they want, more power to you!! Do as they say, let it spin back around when and if it does. I have delt with that type, and it usually isn't worth the headache. But if the $ is good, then you have to suck it up!
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Colorado David

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Re: dealing with micromanagers?
« Reply #8 on: November 27, 2013, 12:26:57 am »

Didn't you get the memo??? They can just buy a camera from Costco and do it them selves and just fix it post if need be. Hello!?!! McFly!!

The scary part of this is it can happen.  I had a great relationship with a client.  The company was sold.  Then my client left, moved away and went to work for another company far, far away.  Her assistant got her job.  She had always been interested in photography so she bought a Canon 1D something or other and watched some web tutorials on lighting product shots.  Now her photography is gracing the company's packaging.  She does a pretty good job.  My work would be better/different, but her's isn't going to keep anyone from buying their products.  And the cost of photography for them went down since she is a staff person.  The unintended in-house photography department.

Phil Indeblanc

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Re: dealing with micromanagers?
« Reply #9 on: November 27, 2013, 01:05:02 am »

I was being part sarcastic for the top level shoots, yet as you mention....Not only that it can happen, it is happening everyday more and more. These are the companies with "good enough" approach. Some just don't need great promo images, while they need to cut the budgets.
 Simple as that. Others need very good, and some need even the top name and the entire marketable package of who they use for shoots etc.   

Some companies get an intern or someone @ $15 an hour and expect good results on product shots for their clothing or accessories etc. Then the companies that care for quality realize there is more to this than placing a body and a $1500 camera with light kit. Thats when good photographers get some nod.
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