My way or the highway

Singapore, 23rd October 2012

Dealing with inflexible and ego-centred people can be pretty frustrating when you are trying to move forward in a project. They come in all form and functions! Today was one of those days were I had to deal with a few proponents of the “my way or the highway” approach. In some cases you cannot always do it your way and need to contemplate whether to take the highway (and pay the toll!).

The first today was a client who did not want to budge on a previously agreed contract. In that contract we had agreed and stipulated the amount of tax that we would absorb as part of our fees. However as they prepared to pay our appointment fees it turned out the tax to be paid on the fees was higher, about 10% more than anticipated. So now the client wants us to absorb the difference. This I refused as we had already given a substantial discount on the fees. He, from his side, had logged in the fee amount with the board of management so it may well be that we will have to take the highway.

Other frequent my way/ high way situations occur in design concepts. We have one going on right now with a landscape consultant. They have a certain lighting concept in mind they feel will best fit their design. From my assessment and long experience I know it will not work so (as the lighting consultant!) I have advise a different path. I will stick to my guns and have expressed to the client that I will not take responsibility for their approach. They may sent me to the highway, but I will not pay the toll 🙂

Another situation today was again about money. We generally invoice progressively in accordance to work done, but some “difficult” clients or project managers come with the line that they can only pay when the work of a certain stage is completed. We all know that stages generally not move sequentially and that some parts may still be in conceptual stages and others in design development. So we invoice progressively to keep up with the work progress. Surely the client does not want us to wait with issuing our work till we have completed all work in that stage! I think on this one it will most likely be my way 🙂

Light Watch 3-163: Following on my stones from yesterday here is some every day (light) inspiration from Italy…

23. October 2012 by Martin Klaasen
Categories: Light & Learn, Light and inspiration, light watch, lighting applications, lighting design practice | 1 comment

One Comment

  1. Hi Martin,
    I had a chuckle at the my way or the highway blog. I love your patience to describe these scenarios that we (us lighting designers) spend much time in our daily life negotiating over. Nicely said 🙂 I like your use of emoticons also.
    Keep up the blog!

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