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  • The Great Disappearing Act

    “Everything was going great but then he became slow to answer my requests and now he’s disappeared entirely,” the prospective client lamented. “What should I do?”

    Oh – that you had called me sooner

    Houdini developers are a common problem. They are easily available at first but suddenly disappear with no warning and you’re left wondering “what happened?”

    Freelance developers are often poor managers of their time. They start out on your project with lots of availability but then get busy and overwhelmed. They start avoiding their inboxes when things get swamped and leave you wondering if they fell off ...

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  • Want better results from your programmer? Communicate your goals.

    The best developers are consultative. They can work with you to help you achieve the best results for your business.

    But you probably wont’ attract the best developers or get the best results if your interactions with them inhibit feedback. For example:

    • Do you provide your programmer with a laundry list of to-do items? Or do you communicate your objectives?
    • Is everything a “priority” to you? Or can you quickly identify the things that are truly the most important?
    • Do you shut down all ideas that didn’t come from you? Or do you express an interest in hearing the programmer’s ...

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  • Random changes <> debugging

    One of the more colorful characters I've worked with over the years was a woman I'll call Ashly. Ashly was a programmer employed by my former employer, and had made the transition from an older technology to classic ASP, which at the time was the cool new thing.

    Occasionally she would ask for my help with something. And each time I was astonished because her difficulties always demonstrated a fundamental misunderstanding of the technology. She was functional, but for the most part illiterate in her coding skills.

    Here's an example: Ashly once came to me confused because her classic ASP ...

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  • Five reasons why my customers are awesome

    I know, I know. Sounds like I'm just trying to suck up, doesn't it?

    Well, just a tiny bit.

    But I do have awesome customers. In fact, there are actually more reasons than 5. But here are the top 5 reasons why I love my customers and think they are the bomb:

    They ask questions. I'm not talking about "when will this be done" types of questions, although they ask that too. They ask questions about why things work the way they do. They want to understand. They are intellectually curious.

    They share their ideas. Some people may find this ...

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  • What kind of emergency support do you need?

    When your software breaks, how quickly do you expect the programmer to respond to your request for assistance?

    Okay, that’s probably too broad. We both know that it depends on how broken it is.

    The software I build for my customers is an integral part of their business. It might be their money scoop. Or it might run their day-to-day operation. Regardless, if it isn’t working at all, it affects their bottom line pretty quickly.

    On the other hand, if it is minor bug that only affects a limited number of transactions, it probably isn’t an emergency.

    Assuming it is ...

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What the critics are saying...

Avonelle has been a pleasure to work with.  Working with someone that you know will always deliver is tremendous.

Mark McNamee @ Renewal by Andersen