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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    State of Disbelief

    Do you inform the client about incompetence?

    Interesting problem, and I can use a bit of advice.
    Many years ago, I designed a site for a local business. He was my first paying design client, and a neighbor (kind of). Set up a shopping cart, and all that, but the client didn't want more than a few products offered on line. Apparently, he only wanted to list the items that weren't selling well in the store. Not surprisingly, he hasn't done well in sales.

    Fast forward to the other day, I get a call from one of his employees who wants to set up a new site for him using our hosting, as well as taking over management of the existing site. This is the third such temporary employee he has "hired" to work on his site. No problem..if he wants to use these folks to do work on the site, fine.
    Only thing is, I get contacted by this designer who wants to know when the files are going to "show up" on the site. Apparently, they felt that once uploaded, files take 24 hours or more to appear.
    *hoo boy*.
    I check, and the files were uploaded into the root, not public_html as clearly explained in the welcome email. I move them, and explain again where to put them. She complains about the server being different than what she used in school, and how it just isn't "good".
    Then I look at the pages, and they are pretty awful (bright green H1 text on black, to give an idea), and the images all reference her hard drive so only she will see them. Also asked me if the 40MB account limit was "per file".
    Obviously a beginner.

    So, on to the question. Knowing the owner doesn't understand much about the internet in general, and the new designer is already blaming her problems on the server, do you:
    1) Ignore this, let her do whatever she wishes, and offer to pick up the pieces later for the owner when things go pear shaped.
    2) Worry that she will convince the owner to move to a "better" server, since she's already intimating that it's the server's fault.
    3) Help her a bit, cluing her in that she's screwing up.
    4) Contact the owner and state your concerns regarding her taking over the shopping cart and both sites when it's obvious she isn't qualified..

    What would you do?
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    NJ, USA
    First I would help her out a bit. After all, we were all noobs once. If she decides ur help has turn into condescending remarks, then go for number four, and just inform the owner of how you could possibly do better work or it would be easier for the both of you if you were the one controlling both sites.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    I would contact the owner. They are likely to understand that you know more about 'c0mp00t3rz' than this designer of theirs. Nothing to lose, I'd say.
    Cody Watson
    Business Student @ SFU [Marketing, Entrepreneurship, Management & Technology, Co-op Certificate, Honours]

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2000
    Tacoma, Washington
    We've always gone for number three. There's nothing wrong with helping people out a bit (within limits).

    She'll be happy she looks good to her boss, and you'll probably get a few extra customers out of it, if she feels she can trust herself on your servers.
    Former Webhost... now, just a guy.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Denver, CO
    Yah, I'd probably got with #3 too, even if it's like going to the dentist. After all, everyone needs to start somewhere, and the owner may not even take well to you telling him that he picked a complete newb to do his site over.
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