Have you, as a project manager, ever tried to figure out why a deadline will be missed on a large project only to discover that the developer couldn’t say “no” when a customer asked for additional items without your knowledge?
How can you avoid this altruistic problem? It rarely results in customer goodwill, as they tend to forget these things come deadline time. Rather, the customer is frustrated, if not angry, while you try to explain that his deadline will not be made. Regardless of your explanations for doing what he asked, he voices a reasonable concern that boils down to this: He didn’t understand what he asked would take longer or cost more.
It only takes a few occurrences for a developer to be involved with a confused customer to realize that being altruistic will come back to bite them. At MightyData, we’ve figured out how to prevent this issue. Change Requests!
Our change requests let our customers know how their requests will affect the timeline, their resources (i.e., if they must wait for the appropriate developer to be available) and their deadlines. They know in advance what their request will require, so they can make a reasonable decision prior to the work being done.
Does this mean we nickel and dime our customers? Absolutely not. Modifications and changes within scope are always included.
Clear, concise communication with consequences. That’s my motto!