Sunday, September 10, 2006

*Home of the Free---Lance. Damned if I Do...The Freelance Curse

This is what I Gotta Know....In the world of Entrepreneurship and Free Enterprise, there lies an inherent struggle for the self-employeed....the Freelance Artist.

In our desire to take our futures into our own hands, and offer our professional services to the world at a greatly discounted rate, we ultimately have to endure the sea-saw, cat n' mouse up and downs of negotiating. For some unknown reason, potential customers that we encounter feel that they are entitled to 'franchise' quality, at bargain-basement prices. I'm willing to give the quality, but the bargain-basement prices are OUT OF THE QUESTION........MAN ;-)...get it...Question Man ;-)

*QUICK NOTE* Don't forget to pick up your Official Question Man T-shirt, and other custom apparel here!

In almost every experience that I've had as a freelance 12-volt installer (my previous career), or freelance writer (my new career ;-), my customers have ALWAYS wanted the best (as we all do) for less. Now, there's nothing wrong with wanting the best, but let's be fair about this. Just because I'm offering my services on my terms does not mean that they are not of the quality of a National Chain Store. Think about it....where do you think I got the skills and the qualifications to offer my services in the first place? Ultimately, it's just that we (Freelance Professionals) know what the services are really worth, so we offer them at what we feel the REAL rate should be....a little below retail, and right above 'cost' (us artists' have to eat too ;-)

There have been times, in my previous career, where my customers would drive me insane! Everybody wants a 'hook-up' beyond the 'hook-up' that you're already giving them. What's the problem....do they think we're on crack or something? I loved (past tense) the 12-volt industry, but I couldn't allow them (begging customers) to steal my passion away from me. I had to take a step away, and re-assess my situation. Now that I'm writing(and selling articles), I'm having a lot more fun, and I don't have to haggle with potential customers. I set the (fair) prices, and they agree...plus I think my writing is good ;-)

Either way, what are we to do? Are we to give up our freelance professions and desires to work for ourselves, and fall back into 'the system'? No! We are going to stay strong and stand tall, and not fall victim to 'Silver-Tongued' fast-talking negotiators. Seriously, how do they expect us to make a living? I understand the whole game of 'big business', but being that they're a part of 'big business', you'd think they'd have a little compassion for the little guy...but then again, little guys don't fit within the parameters of 'BIG' business, huh?

With every service known to man being duplicated and exploited all over the internet, we are being programmed to conform and follow society's guidelines. I say 'screw that!' Who's with me!?...

We, the sruggling few freelance artists' need to stick to our guns, keep our services above average and remain strong when negotiating for our futures. 'Big Business' was a solid foundation before the internet became fully available to the world, and with that came the introduction of the 'freelance artist'. Our world is the internet....Blogs, personal/small business websites, MySpace, Craigslist, and enumourous networking services that provide gateways for all of us who live and die by our budgets.

We all should unite and take a stand against 'BIG business'. The next time you get a contract, and someone tries to renegotiate your prices, hang the phone up in their faces!!! ;-) Just kidding, but we do need to do something. I understand human nature when it comes to paying for services outside actual 'stores'. We tend to feel like we're making an unsecure investment. When dealing with Freelance Artists', there are no REAL garauntees. We, as Freelance Artists' just have to make sure that we continue to provide good enough services to show the negotiating world that there is a standard of quality that we, (Freelance Artists') live by. Once we do that, there will be more respect for us, and less room to haggle.

....and with that being said....as always....WHO HAS AN ANSWER FOR THE QUESTION MAN?

...This Article was inspired by Rob Arel http://www.blackdoorcreative.com/... my Question Man logo Designer...


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Struggling with freelance work kinda makes you want to keep working for the man...

9:37 AM  
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