30 September 2009

Customer/Supplier Relationships

One of the results of the financial crisis is the fact that some people are making the move from being employees to becoming suppliers. In times when jobs are hard to find some people take the leap to self employment, follow their dreams and start their own business.

For those people it's often also the first time they are facing customer/supplier relationships, which sometimes can be a shock.
Customers and suppliers usually have different interests and each of them is trying to get the most out of the deal. This animation movie is a good example on how a typical demand from a customer to a graphical designer could be like. If you are easily offended please skip to the next part.

As this may come as a shock to some of you and you will think this is very much 'over the top', it's actually typical for a lot of the conversations you will experience when interacting with customers. Sometimes it will be even worse and customers might even demand to deliver your services for free. In this second movie I found some more 'over the top' examples, which are VERY recognizable.

Of course I don't want to scare you out of a possible adventure in chasing your own self employed dream, I just think it's better if you know upfront that these are actually common situations.
Using Social Media and Social Networks can improve the relationships between the users.
You wouldn't even think of having such a conversation with any of your friends, do you ?
When you really know each other, you are much less likely to start digging to the bottom like in the examples of these movieclips. Networking will help you to build your reputation and to build trust between people. When people come to you through a referral based on your reputation they will be less likely to start a 'flea market trade'. In those cases they will probably ask you to make a honest calculation and then they will decide to take it or not.

It's possible that the stressful life we live these days is sometimes pushing us over the edge and makes us dig for the bottom. But from time to time we have to stand still and look at ourselves in the mirror. Everyone needs to make a living and also those people at your service are earning a honest paycheck to feed their families. Maybe the new generations are lacking a bit of the politeness of our grandparents ... not all progress is an improvement.

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