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Table Of Contents  The Online Freelancing Guide
 >  Finding and Evaluating Online Freelancing Projects
      >  Special Circumstances and Considerations in Assessing Internet Freelancing Projects

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Cleanup Tasks - Fixing Other Freelancers’ Messes
(Page 1 of 3)

You’re reading this guide because you’re a good freelancer who wants to be even better. But many of your colleagues are not. The many projects on freelancing sites include horror stories from clients who hired someone who seemed like a good idea at the time, but ended up making a mess of their projects. Employers who initially meet with failure often return back to find more qualified professionals to fix the mistakes made by those they initially hired.

If doing a rush job for a client in a time crunch can make you look like a hero, cleaning up another freelancer’s mess has even more potential to do so. Being the cavalry that rushes into battle to save the day can earn you a client for life. Furthermore, you’ll be doing a good deed for freelancers in general, by restoring the customer’s faith in the online freelancing process.

However, with any chance for great rewards come great risks. The cavalry sometimes turns the tide of battle for the “good guys”—but sometimes they just add to the casualty count. It’s important to know what you’re getting yourself into before you metaphorically charge into the Valley of Death.

It’s Not Always the Freelancer

The majority of failed projects are the fault of the contractors who were hired to do the work. Messed up projects are often due to simple lack of expertise: the contractor said he or she could do the work but could not. Other times the issue could be poor communication, bad time management, or even a simple lack of professional integrity.

However, clients themselves are often at least partially responsible for a failed project, and sometimes they are entirely responsible. And if the client is really the cause of the failure, bringing in someone new is not likely to result in a success.

It can be hard to tell when the client is really the problem; after all, the guy who worked on the project before you probably didn’t bid on the work thinking the project would fail. But there are a few signs you should watch for in a listing for a remedial job that may indicate that the client is really the source of the problem. I covered all of these in preceding sections of this chapter dealing with assessment of clients and project warning signs, so be sure you keep those in mind when considering a clean-up job. Be especially on the lookout for these leading causes of project failure: unrealistic budgets; poor communication skills; bad attitude; and micromanaging.


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Last Site Update: February 1, 2012

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