The Absentee Client

The next instalment in the archetypes series

When the project starts the Absentee Client engages the team just long enough to build up some velocity. As soon as he perceives some progress being made, the project is quickly re-prioritized to a much lower level in his calendar. The team will wait days or weeks to hear back from The Absentee Client about the simplest of clarifications. Important meetings will be rescheduled numerous times at his request and when he does attend they will have to be cut short due something else important having come up.

One way to get the Absentee Client’s attention is to outline how significantly the lack of engagement is increasing the timeline and the risk to the project. Your best bet is to put the effects of The Absentee Client’s actions into terms of cost. Unfortunately, and this should not be undertaken lightly, sometimes the only way to do this is to address the Absentee Client’s superior.