I’m a consultant, more or less. What I really do is guide small business owners towards a more intelligent use of their time and resources. Someimtes, this invovles teaching them Basic Computer Skills.
Now, that’s all well and fine, because I have nothing against basic ignorance – I mean, if you haven’t ever done X, you can’t be expected to do X competently, if at all.
What I have a severe problem with is arrogance. I have this client (let’s call her Judith) who is a very self-important person. She, in turn, consults to professionals (lawyers, doctors, high-earners).
Judith, while being quite good at turning the computer on, can’t seem to make Windows behave the way she wants it to. She expects the computer to do specifically what she wants it to do without much effort on her part. She has basic competency in Word and Excel, enough to run her practice, but she’s very disorganized. She would like all her files arranged by type of file (document, spreadhseet, etc.) and while this isn’t impossible to do and keep going, I asked her if she might benefit more from having her files arranged by client.
Well, I now know enough never to question her again about anything regarding her computer. She is the type that expects it all and expects it yesterday, and she can’t see any reason on God’s green earth why she can’t have it all exactly as she wants it.
The trouble is, she’s a freind of a friend. She likes to think that I’m her friend, now, too, but the truth is, i can’t stand being around her. At all. For even a few minutes. She drives me totally apeshit with her requests (and they aren’t all computer-related, either. She one time asked me to hang a corkboard in her office. :dubious: )
She’s invited me over for dinner. Rather, I have an appointment with her this evening, and she is serving me dinner. She made it clear that dinner was being served for just us; I’ve gotten out of dinner with her a few times before. She’s older (60+) and lives alone. I’m 37, and gay. It’s not terribly clear that she’s trying to hit on me. I’m sure she’s just lonely, and it’d be great if I enjoyed her company.
I’m getting very close to the point of having to end our business relationship, only because I can’t stand spending time with her.
If this were your problem, how would you do it?
My options (that I can see) are:
[li]become terribly busy and never have time to fit her in[/li][li]bluntly tell her it isn’t working out[/li][li]somehow indicate to her that it’s not working[/li][/ul]
It’s the last one I can’t quite get clear how to do, what to say.
I’m personally leaning towards the first option.
And it isn’t like I have to have answers right now – I’ll do dinner and try not to disembowel her – but something’s gotta give. Sooner rather than later. (It’s also not the case that I need her – she’s a very very tiny part of my income currently – and the psychological damage is nowhere nearly worth what I’m bililng her.)
What say you, Dopers?