I’ve been trying to help some of my birdy friends who are officers of a national avian related organization get domain ownership and hosting issues resolved for the organization’s website. The brother of a former officer – I’ll call him ‘Joe’ – had registered the domain, developed and hosted the site. The organization paid for the registration and hosting fees. Since the change of leadership in the organization was, ummm… somewhat acrimonious, the current website administrator has been less than pleasant (on behalf of his sister) to the current officers.
First, Joe agreed that he would continue in his role as host administrator, then he changed his mind and said “I do not wish the authority or the responsibility for maintaining these domains into the future” along with a request to move the site to another hosting account. (Domain ownership had already been transferred, for which he charged a $75 administrative fee.) Later, in an email to me, Joe wrote he felt the site was being “…hijacked by these heavy-handed administrators.” Huh? Communication deteriorated further to the point where he was abusive and condescending to the officers, calling them “clueless” indicating he was sick of “hand holding” and then bidding them “good riddance” with a demand that they vacate his servers immediately.
The officers are good folks who simply don’t understand the process of getting a website from an idea to something visual that people can actually visit. This is a volunteer organization and none of them are technically savvy. Spouses of two of the officers have recently had catastrophic health events, and another officer has MS and has been having trouble with her condition. Basically, they are doing the best job they can and they thought they had followed this guy’s instructions. They certainly meant to. Joe lost his patience because he believed that the officers were willfully ignoring him, when in reality they were just busy with their own priorities and weren’t really aware further action was required.
Joe’s business is web development and hosting. As a purported professional, his communication and service skills are dismal. I hope he doesn’t drop his other customers simply because they require some handholding. Once I have finished moving the site to its new host and have made sure there’s no further reliance on him, I think I’ll write him an email telling him how special he is. In a nice, professional manner of course.
Post suggestions on what I should include in the letter to the comments box please. 😉