19 // The cost of rush work on your design business
November 12, 2020
Unrealistic deadlines, clients needing a design yesterday… sound familiar?
Yup, we’ve all been there….It’s 5pm on a Friday afternoon and a client has just dropped a tight deadline bomb on you.
They need it like, NOW!
This is not a fight, flight or freeze moment lovely designers—you can be really ready for this conversation with your client.
In this podcast episode, we outline strategies to ensure you feel empowered when you are thrown these types of curveballs.
We always like to compare graphic design to other professions—because graphic design is a grand profession and you are worthy of being paid very well for your valuable time, creative secret sauce and intellectual property.
If you take your fur baby to the vet in the middle of the night, you will pay a premium—it’s a no brainer. That same principle should apply with your graphic design business.
In this episode we discuss:
What constitutes rush work (hint: you get to decide)
What time period to place on a rush job
How to set clear boundaries with your clients through your proposal wording, contract and welcome packet
How to be financially remunerated for rush work
How much to charge for rush fees
How to avoid rescuing clients at your own cost
How it’s ok to say no
What to do about close-knit clients and love-jobs and genuine design emergencies
The real cost of rush work.
Rush jobs can take a toll on you, your schedule and your other clients.
Rushing your creative process can have a negative impact on the integrity of the work you produce, so be really sure you are really okay to take on a rush job. Assess it and be discerning with how it will potentially impact you and your business.
Communicate clearly As soon as you get the request for a rush job. It’s best to have some canned responses to these types of requests ready to go, when you aren’t affected by the pressure. That way there’s no emotion or panic that is going to influence your decision and your communication will be measured and calm instead of reactive. “Ah yes, you need this yesterday, well I can’t do that but what I can do is xyz and it will cost you this much”. Then get a signature.
Set boundaries from the get-go Have a rush-job policy outlined in your welcome packet so there are no surprises. Include timeframes at a minimum and if possible a full scope of work timeline in your contract.
Remember at the end of the day, you are in control of your business. If it doesn’t feel good, don’t do it.
Your physical and mental health comes first. There is so much beautiful power in saying ‘No’. Aaand, you may just discover the rush job suddenly isn’t needed so soon.