Etin Obaseki
“A boy becomes a man in the same way a seed becomes a tree. The seed has to die for the tree to grow and the boy has to leave for the man to show.” — Me
3 min read
The Customer is Right

About three weeks ago, one of my mentors contacted me on helping him work on a web site for an important client.

It was a very big deal, both because of the client we were doing it for and because someone I greatly respect had asked me to collaborate with him.

So, after listening (only partially, I was really excited about the job😂) to what he wanted I got to work.

It was a WordPress powered site and he wanted a specialised sort of gallery. So I set about doing it The WordPress Way™.

I searched everywhere for a plugin to do what I heard him say I should do.

I searched the WordPress Repositories, WPBeginner, even Medium. 😒.

I found nothing.

So, I reported back to him, my lack of success in finding a suitable plugin. I suggested that I build my own plugin.

He agreed. I told him I'd have it done in no time at all, because after all, it was "just" WordPress.

I felt I'd have WordPress development down in like five minutes.

Boy, was I wrong. But that's a discussion for another day.

Two long and gruelling weeks later, I was bruised and battered, but I had been victorious!🙋.

So, I uploaded my first WordPress plugin to the client's website, activated it and watched it work beautifully.

I pinged my mentor, confident that I would be applauded for my masterpiece.

He sent a voice note five minutes later. The voice note was ten seconds long.

Ten seconds after I started playing the voice note, I realised that I had wasted the last two weeks.

It wasn't a complete waste, since I learnt a lot of new stuff. But the primary objective was not achieved.

What the client had actually wanted could have been achieved in five or ten minutes if only I had listened to the request rather than let myself get carried away by what I wanted to do.

This happens to Creatives a lot. I once read on Medium (although, I can't remember who wrote it) that

"programmers could disappear into their laptops for months at a time, only to emerge with a product that nobody wants"

This perfectly sums up what happened to me😥 (even though, in my case, it was just two weeks instead of months).

Well, I finally learnt that the customer is King, or, at least, I hope I have😂.

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