home again, home again, jiggety jig
Back to WA.
Client in Dallas doesn't like my work. They have some reason, but it's mostly
a) poor communication
b) unfortunate events (that could have been prevented by me if I were more diligent)
I was late to a few mtgs, and I hadn't set their expectations well enough as to content/format of the meetings (it's needs analysis and configuration; they keep trying to make it be classroom-style end-user training). They complained to the proj mgr who hired me for the gig, he called me, I said I'd address it. And then I promptly screwed up by oversleeping my alarm when I had 6-8 people waiting to start a mtg at 8am.
There is a reasonable explanation for all of it (even the oversleeping) by which I mean it's not about being egregiously careless or unprofessional. I've gone about 4 wks w/o adequate sleep; my body was still on Pacific Time; I started the wk with a red-eye flight to be with my kids on Fathers Day and still accomodate the client's Summer Mon-Thu work schedule; I was doing a day's work, then going back to my hotel and working till the wee hrs for another client in crisis; the radio station I set the alarm to faded to static by morning; etc) but the bottom line is that none of that should be the client's problem -- it's my responsibility to get there on time and to communicate better.
I have a feeling I set out on the wrong foot, and it might be very difficult to overcome their impressions of me and my work. I'm not such a delicate flower that I'll give up in shame and slink away, but there's a possibility I won't get another opportunity to turn things around. I think they believe there are lots of equally qualified consultants waiting in the wings, and it's just a matter of asking for a different one and Presto, he/she will show up and do things better.
The reality* is that I can do a much better job for them than anyone else, but they just don't know it yet. And if by some chance there *is* another resource available, I may never get a chance to show them so. It's frustrating. Especially the part I could have avoided by having my life in better order so I'm less busy/tired, or choosing a better radio station, or asking for a wakeup call as backup. Or whatever.
*my reality, that is