Look, I'm not a business person. I just want to make cool stuff, and in doing so it helps to be flexible and ask for feedback from as many people (as often as possible). After years of experimenting, I've now found a workflow that is loose, always takes the human component into account, and delivers good results at the same time.
No hourly rate
I don't work with hourly rates. Why not? Because it's unfair for both me and the clients.
The more skillful you are, the faster you work and produce good results. As such, asking an hourly rate would mean I get paid less because I am better at something. Weird, right?
On the other hand, it could happen that I make mistakes, or that I'm sick and work a little slower. It would be unfair to ask the client to pay for 10 hours of work, which could have been 2 if I was in a better state of mind.
In summary: I work with fixed rates, which are determined on a project-by-project basis, in consultation with the client of course.
Give it time
Our brains need time to fully understand something and to reach their best ideas.
My best work is done when I give it time. The worst projects I've ever made were the result of hasty decisions and "just trying to get it done as quickly as possible".
I always ask people to give me enough time. If you put pressure on something or set deadlines that are too tight, you're basically saying: "I want to trade quality for a faster end product"
Trust me. Trust that I work as fast as I can and that I will deliver. Trust me that good work takes time, and that the first version might be rubbish, but the third version will be amazing.
Of course, I can work with deadlines, I can work faster if needed. But please provide assignments as early as possible, or ask yourself if certain tight deadlines are really needed.
Criticism & Communication
Despite my "business relation" with clients, I try to communicate as kindly and honestly as possible. In the end, we're two people trying to make the best possible project together. Being angry at each other, or withholding feedback because you're afraid to make me upset, is never necessary. Feedback improves my skills, it improves the end product, and it ultimately improves relationships as well.
Sky's the limit!
When I was younger, people used to call me "crazy, but in the good way". Now, I;m not sure if I agree or like that statement, but it is true that nothing is too crazy for me. I would even call it my specialty.
There are many people who can design really strong, modern websites. There are many people who can write catchy pop songs or write solid, formal articles on something. I want to go a little deeper than that. I want to make projects more human, more unique, more creative, innovative, funnier, and all that jazz.
(I mean, look at this website. Did you notice the complete lack of menu? Or that the tree is on the right side, where it would normally be on the left, because we read from left to right?)
Teaching & Learning
Arguably my biggest passion in life is learning and teaching. It's the reason my work extends to so many completely different areas: I want to learn everything! On top of that, I want to transfer what I've learned to others, so they can build cool stuff as well.
If you ever want to know why I did (or did not) do something, then you can just ask me, I love talk about it :) If you have an assignment of which you're not sure if it would suit me, just tell me and we'll see. As I said, I love learning new things.