“I would like your opinion regarding a real estate agent's interference on the photoshoot. This particular agent arrives 3/4 of the way through the shoot and then questions me about each and every room in front of the owner. She will say, "Did you get that room?" I don't know if she is trying to prove herself to the customer but I find it demeaning in a big way. I have been photographing homes for 27 years and my problem that I am certainly in a zone while I am shooting the rooms. This just totally throws me off in front of the seller and I have lost my concentration. I mentioned this to her today and she was pissed. After all, I started this business before anyone ever photographed houses; I am hired for my expertise. What do you all think about this?”
Wow, that’s an interesting one, Lynn! My answer is a two-parter. The first part revolves around some info that is missing for me in your write-up. I’d want to find out from you if you’ve given some thought on the manner in which you've expressed your displeasure with the client. For instance, if you’d expressed yourself with an angry tone, it might have caused her to be taken off-guard or resentful, which might lead her to feeling “pissed”, as you put it. I’m not trying to insult your sensibilities, nor your professionalism, Lynn; I’m just wanting to cover off some potential explanations for your client’s immediate reaction.
If, however, you presented your concern appropriately and she still got pissed right away, then that's another story. If she’s a longer-term client that you have a previously good history with, then I might be inclined to try to salvage things. If she is a relatively new client though, and she’s already reacting to you this way, then I’d be inclined to part ways. I say that because someone who gets “pissed” so quickly, without giving thought as to how her behavior was affecting you, is a sign of disrespect in my eyes and for me, that is my personal “line in the sand”. Once it’s crossed, then it’s hard to come back from. The only time in my career when I’ve fired a client is over this very issue of feeling disrespected in their presence.
Anyway, that’s my two-cents based on the information you’ve provided, Lynn. I’m sure others will offer additional insights and things for you to consider. Thanks again for reaching out.