I don’t like it when things aren’t my fault.
Working in an agency, there are email threads and email loops. Things get communicated here, there, Slack, Asana, Jira, Evernote — — etcetera. Communication can happen everywhere .. which means it’s really easy to over communicate, or, worse, lose track of conversations.
It also means that there’s typically a written record of where things go wrong. People can find where Sally from Agency B confirmed receipt of a timeline for Big-Client, and the very day she missed it.
Typically though, it feels like you’re the only one aware of the situation. The client will come to you and ask for something, and you’re confused because your portion of the project is done.
The great thing is, it’s easy to see where things went wrong — right down to the who. The part I don’t like.. is having to handle that knowledge. Especially when it’s multiple agencies working together for one robust client. That’s why I don’t like it when things aren’t my fault. I know I can’t take ownership and provide an explanation for what happened, and why it won’t be a repeated mistake.
If you’re in this situation, and you find that Sally from Agency B that you’re working with for Big-Client is the reason something went wrong — and now the client is seeking your assistance.
Another reason I don’t like it when things aren’t my fault, is because I don’t know why something went wrong. That makes it awfully hard to make an action plan for future avoidance.
But tip time: Whatever is in your power to rectify the situation — do it. And do it quickly. Then let people know what you did.
Don’t waste the client’s time and money seeking the answers, when you already have a solution at the ready. Most often, the client won’t spend time playing the blame-game, and are really just seeking a solution.
It will be better for you, if you can provide the answers they’re looking for. If you can though, I recommend CC’ing the offending party so they’re not only aware of the conversation, but…