One of the things that most people have a hard time doing is letting go. Once your business gets large enough you simply can’t manage all parts of it anymore. To run it effectively you need to learn to let go.

While moving a site for a client recently I was continual peppered with questions from the client. They wanted to understand why I was pointing the A record one place and the MX records another place. Then why wasn’t I doing the same thing for a second domain? Why was I just using nameservers? While this peppering continues I was dealing with a web host that had odd features and bad UI with misleading labels. I was dealing with calls to the hosting companies support desk and in and out of Terminal.

Finally exasperated I said to my client:

I don’t want to be rude but I’m calling support, and in Terminal, and trying to tell someone a 28 character password over the phone. Can you just let me do my job and we can debrief after?

That ended the questions from the client and let me get my job done effectively but I’m not sure it solved the ultimate issue.

Letting Go

Something I am very good at is letting go of things that are not my responsibility.

In my house my wife takes care of our finances. I don’t even ask her about it until she wants input. Me asking 5 questions a day will not make her job easier, it’s just going to make her frustrated as she gets pulled away from the tasks she needs to do in to answering my questions.

When I contract work out to other developers, I don’t bug them daily for updates. We decide when the work is due and I let them update me on the day it’s due. Again, asking 5 questions a day about the project will not make them get more done. They’re simply going to be more distracted and bill me for more admin time.


Now I suppose that in both my scenario’s above I should note the trust factor that has been established. I only contract developers I know well, and my wife has shown over 10 years that she knows what she is doing. I trust them, so I don’t need to bug them.

For this client, I’ve shipped about 10 dev cycles since August on time. I’d like to think that I’ve proved that I’m trustworthy.

A Solo Business

Where I think this particular client issue comes from, is the fact that they are the owner of a business. It’s much harder for the owner to let pieces go that they once took care of.

See they have moved the site by changing the nameservers, now that was before they had email and lots of paying clients and databases to large for a PHPMyAdmin import. It’s above their head now but they kind of want to know how to do it.

It’s hard to let go when it was something you did before.