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View Poll Results: Who's opinion is worth more?

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  • Developer's

    3 15.79%
  • Client's

    16 84.21%
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  1. #1
    SitePoint Evangelist
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    Who's opinion is worth more?

    I just wanted to take this quick poll.

  2. #2
    Serial Publisher silver trophy aspen's Avatar
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    the one who pays always gets final say.

    That doesn't mean as a consultant you shouldn't try to persuade them to use the best possible _______. But when it comes down to it, what the client wants (and pays for) the client gets.
    Chris Beasley - I publish content and ecommerce sites.
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  3. #3
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy Jeremy W.'s Avatar
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    I'm not answering becuase I've posted my opinion and the question is too closed. People will vote client because they don't have the context of the discussion which you are trying to base your opinion on.

    I am responsible for the health of my business above that of my client's. As such, if a client's decision will reflect wrongly on my business I will helpfully terminate the contract and refer the client to someone else.

    If you have a problem with that, tough, however don't make this personal.

    Further, when talking OPINIONS (not decisions), I trust my employees and advisors more. Thus, when making a decision I will do what is best for the client whether they know it or not. Sometimes that is unpopular ("I'm paying you, do what I say" generally results in me paying a cancellation fee), however it has been best for my business in the long run.

    Further, becuase we do project analysis, market analysis and base analysis the client is presented with all information and makes decisions before we ever start design. Most often these decisions reflect what the user wants. It is rare that I even get into this kind of a discussion with a client because the discussion isn't "I think a forum is good" versus "I think it sucks", it is "users want a forum", plain and simple.

    As stated, we use project management docs to allow the client to make an informed decision. Part of that process is negotiating a balance between what is best for the client's business and what is best for the users,.

    Your comments in the previous thread about me "taking some business classes" are both insulting and ill-informed. As I stated, doing a design for a client we spend 90% of the time talking business and less than 10% talking design. Why? Because the business decisions directly affect the design and leave few options.
    Last edited by Jeremy W.; Jul 11, 2001 at 10:15.
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  4. #4
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    This poll is going to cause (and is causing, I think) some confusion. I think we're mixing "who should have the final say?" with "who knows better?" The client should have the final say, but the developer knows better. If the developer did not know better, s/he wouldn't really be the developer, now would they?

  5. #5
    SitePoint Evangelist
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    Hmmm.

    The question was worded as intended. I was told:

    The client's opinoin is not worth more than the company providing the service.
    And I wanted to test the validity of that statement...

  6. #6
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    That's STILL a gray area, as I've said, though. Opinion on what? Color schemes? Functionality? Final say? These things vary. I doubt the client's opinion means anything on, say, what programming language to use, or the structure of the tables used in the backend, but their opinion means quite a lot when it comes to deciding what raw content will be on the site.

  7. #7
    SitePoint Evangelist mad-onion's Avatar
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    I have to agree with commish here...

    Normally clients are hiring a designer/programmer/consultant/professional because they do not deem they have the skills to do what is neccesary! Now because they have taken that attitude and picked up the phone and called a professional that will normally listen and take what the professional has to say and make a judgement on what should be done.
    Whenever i am programming (or whatever) for a client their say is final because they are the business person and know what their website needs to accomplish for their entity and the hired professional cannot know everything that the person having the website built for them does..

    Collaboration between the client and developer is always the best way, IMHO if you can get on with the client to that extent you should find another client...

    Studiococo, i dont agree with your opinions and fail to see how holding those opinions your clients could really be winning (oneday that will catch up with you). And also your comments about personalising things dont hold up when your entire post is personal.
    Your opinions reflect what they teach 16yr old kids in economics (some friends take it and i have looked through their work books, total cr*p! :P)and frankly that is very naive!
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  8. #8
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy TheOriginalH's Avatar
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    Originally posted by studiococo
    I'm not answering becuase I've posted my opinion and the question is too closed
    Remarkably long "no answer"

    H
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  9. #9
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy Jeremy W.'s Avatar
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    mad: I'm sorry, which opinions, I'm open to being taught. It seems I came through unclear on another similar thread and that wasn't my intention.

    We work more closely than most companies I know with our clients. We spend 2 weeks with them (1 week full time, normally in their office) balancing what they want, our ideas and what the users want.

    Which part of our philosphy is off (I'm being totally open here... I felt attacked at first, but decided to feck it and learn )
    SVP Marketing, SoCast SRM
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  10. #10
    SitePoint Evangelist mad-onion's Avatar
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    Studiococo: i was refering to your attitude in general! If you want to discuss that further by all means open a thread
    I am not going to debate different business methods at length though because that is a pointless debate!

    Cheers
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  11. #11
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy Jeremy W.'s Avatar
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    mad: I know my attitude towards clients directly sucks. That's why I use Customer Service reps. The only time I talk to clients alone is when I'm "impressing" them with the business. When all meetings happen a CSR is there. If the client wants to talk to someone about anything minor they talk to a CSR otherwise they talk to the Lead [x] (developer, designer, tech, etc). The only time they talk to me directly is when there is a serious problem that the others can't do anything about (and that has yet to happen).

    My philosphy is to "play to people's strenghts", and customers aren't my strength, yet (I'm really trying to learn, to stop and think a bit more before responding, etc).
    SVP Marketing, SoCast SRM
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  12. #12
    Serial Publisher silver trophy aspen's Avatar
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    A man walks into a MacDonalds and orders a hamburger with only cheese and ketchup on it.

    The cashier takes his order and starts working on his drink. A minute later she comes back.

    "I'm sorry sir, our cook just informed me that he thinks you will enjoy your sandwich more with pickles on it. Since he is the one who makes the sandwiches he gets final say in this matter. So your burger will have pickles on it."

    The man goes to Burger King, where you can have it your way.
    Chris Beasley - I publish content and ecommerce sites.
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  13. #13
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy Jeremy W.'s Avatar
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    If it was a case of a simple meal, I agree with the principle of "the customer is always right".

    However, if the it is the customer's business or livelihood or something they hold dear I won't do anything I believe is against the customer's best interest without a disclaimer. I believe it is best for both parties. All it says is (in essence) "I, the customer am doing this against the advice of studio:coco".

    However, if the decision itself is "wrong" (something which won't work for instance) then, hell yeah I'll send them to burger king.

    It's like the customer asking for peanut butter on their burger. If they wanted it I'd go out and buy it, make them sign a quick little waiver and make the burger.

    If however the customer wanted cianide (sp?)... Well, they can go to BK.

    Again, this has only happened to me once (sending them to BK), and the customer was happy there and it was good for my business because the customer and the company I referred them to both remembered their experience with my company as a good one.

    Sorry if I'm taking this a little too personal, I'm in code-land and tend to get uptight right after I come out
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  14. #14
    :) delemtri's Avatar
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    That looks like "the client's opinion is not worth more than the company providing the service," not like "the client's opinion is not worth more than that of the company providing the service."

  15. #15
    Prolific Blogger silver trophy Technosailor's Avatar
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    I agree with coco. The person whose OPINION is WORTH more is the developer, most definitely. Now who do I listen to? The client. But the opinion of the professional is always WORTH more than the opinion of an amateur. Which one carries more weight in the decision making process is anotehr story.

    SKetch
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  16. #16
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy Jeremy W.'s Avatar
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    Exactly, though as I said for me there are lines. I refuse to be party to "poisoning" a client's business and will tactfully bow out if such a situation arises.
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  17. #17
    SitePoint Evangelist
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    The saga continues...

    But the opinion of the professional is always WORTH more than the opinion of an amateur.
    The poll above seems to indicate otherwise.

    There appears to be a lot of disrepect for the customer in the web development industry.

    Are you getting the same impression?

  18. #18
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy Jeremy W.'s Avatar
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    As stated, the poll is a "closed" poll and doesn't show the proper context. (edit: The poll is much like "do you like chocolate or oranges". There is no gauge for balance or greater measure of choice)

    There is no disrespect towards customers in this thread. Customers are the livelihood that makes our business a business.
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  19. #19
    SitePoint Evangelist
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    No disrepect.

    Thinking your opinion is ALWAYS worth more than the opinion of the client is disrespectful.

    Calling the client an amateur is also disrespectful.

    <off topic>

    For the record, I like chocolate better than oranges.

    </offtopic>

  20. #20
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy Jeremy W.'s Avatar
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    But I don't always think it is, as stated.

    Generally though, I trust the opinion of one of my trusted advisors above those of a client with no experience in an area. That doesn't mean I always make the decision to go with the developer, as I've already said 4 or 5 times.

    The question wasn't "which do you like better". It was "which do you like".
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  21. #21
    SitePoint Evangelist
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    In that case.

    I would click on the Chocolate option because that answer is more correct for me.

  22. #22
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy Jeremy W.'s Avatar
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    Exactly, "more correct".

    So, on your poll most people are voting becuase it's "more correct", not because it's what they actually really think. Thus, it's too closed of a question.

    Not to rag on you, but you pointed to your poll as proof and it isn't proof of anything. As you can tell by the differing opininos in here, it isn't as simple as "the client is always right" or "developers are always wrong", it's much more complex and often rests on business decisions and how you view your company fitting into any given marketplace.

    Thus, it isn't an issue of you're wrong and I'm right but that we have different opinoins which is what I was trying to highlight before you opened this poll.

    The client can be right and still disagree with my developer. The client can be wrong and still have things turn out good. I didn't say clients by default are wrong, and if it came across that way I'm sorry.
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  23. #23
    Prolific Blogger silver trophy Technosailor's Avatar
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    don't parse my words, regre. I never call my client an amateur. However, for the sake of this debate, it is safe to say that the designer is the professional and the client is NOT the professional, IOW the amateur.

    With that basis, I give more credibility to the designer than the client when it comes to opinions because they know what they are doing, they have been trained (formally or otherwise) to see the details where the client does not...that makes the professionals opinion WORTH more than the amateur. For example:

    A farmer own a field. He tends that field year after year. One year, his nephew from the big city comes to stay with him for the summer to learn something of another life. The farmer teaches him the ways of the farm. How to plant, how to water, how to harvest.

    The nephew goes back to the city but shortly thereafter, recieves the news that his uncle had had a heart attack and had passed away. In the midst of everything, he ends up with the farm.

    He moves tot he farm and over the next few years, plants and tends and harvests, carrying on his uncle's traditions. However there was a problem. See, the nephew planted corn in the field, year after year. That's what he saw his uncle do. As any good farmer know, though, you must rotate the crops to preserve a good balance of minerals and nutrients in the soil. Within 7 years, he began having problems growing crops. He couldn't grow any crops. No matter how hard he tried.

    The moral of the story? There's a whole lot of worth in experience.

    Sketch
    Aaron Brazell
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  24. #24
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy Jeremy W.'s Avatar
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    I agree completely.

    rgre: We aren't saying the client is worthless (in sketch's example he produced good crops for some 5-7 years) however it seems that you are saying designers/developers are "expendable" in terms of opinions as well as you "firing them if they have a problem with" your way of thinking.
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  25. #25
    SitePoint Evangelist
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    Clarification

    Who were you referring to in your quote?

    But the opinion of the professional is always WORTH more than the opinion of an amateur.
    The line before it reads:

    I agree with coco. The person whose OPINION is WORTH more is the developer, most definitely. Now who do I listen to? The client.
    I assumed you were talking about the Client, since the only other person mentioned in the poll is the Developer.


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