Never Sell Yourself Short
“By dedicating ourselves to quality, we hope to set our business apart from the status quo. But at what price? Can we stay true to our personal self-worth and still get customers? “
Haven’t we all been down this path, rating your self-worth in the marketplace? We want the customer, we want to offer a fair price market price to that customer. But we also don’t want to low-ball our rates in order to get the customer. Especially when it comes to our own self-worth, there is always someone bidding a lower rate.
So, what is your time worth?
Never sell yourself short – Many industries are wrestling with this push and pull dilemma, as we are all faced with making a profit and doing good by our customers. As a writer, I’ve experienced this more times than I would care to admit. You need the work, the pay won’t even cover the electricity it will cost to turn on your computer, but …
The secret lies in showing value to the customer and proving our talents are worth the higher cost. Or, perhaps even just a decent cost. I hate to say this though, more companies are betting on the low-ball production cost than risking the high pay for an unknown outcome. Let’s run with this for just a moment – so we bid the job low because we need the work and also, we want to get our foot in the door for future work. But what then?
We get the job, find we are barely making any money on it, but the quality is great, the customer is happy, and we have put ourselves in a great position for the next job. What is the expectation of the customer? He will want the same quality job for, yet again, a low-ball price. Hmmm…
Okay, what started this whole rant is I got burned. Yup, been in the business writing and designing for great clients who pay your invoices and come back because they love your work. Went on board without getting a rate up front (there were deadlines and I never miss a deadline) and their site was well-written. I assumed (don’t even go there!) the money would be comparable. But, as you guessed, the other writers are doing it for pennies. How do these people work at $4.50 an hour?
I learned my lesson. Contract, signed and sealed, before any words are written. Got it.
K, I realize, I’m just blowing off steam here. I am tired of people using others for their own gain, even in business. By either ‘taking them’ or saying the rate was posted when it was not, a hiring firm shows little integrity, but is probably feeling pretty good when their boss commends them on their production.
Low pay for high quality or quantity of work is rampant nowadays, and I get it, we all have bills to pay. If you can’t work for breadcrumbs, there is always someone to take your place. This ruthlessness apparently has no boundaries and it leaves the small businessman and freelance entrepreneur struggling. But if you can find someone to do the work for pennies, why not? I get it. It isn’t right, but I get it. I’m such a dinosaur … I really like living by the Golden Rule …
Sorry for the rant … but thanks for the listen!
Please, share your thoughts and comments on this subject. I need perspective and a bit of reality in the matter.
For more great reading on this subject