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Defied best practices -- what now?

Community Guru
Jacqueline P Member Since: Dec 28, 2015
1 of 6

Got a request from a client I've done a lot of business with to do a job I did last year as well. Started despite lack of funded milestone, the person who does that was out.  

 

On the fence about whether I wanted to do this anyway, but started. Got the job invite this morning -- it's below what I am willing to do this for but if I stop now, I put the Art Director in a very bad place. Almost feels like I'm committing armed robbery. Because it's updating content but not format, they downplay time involved.

 

Offer is $350. I want $500. They have a more competent AD now and I don't get as much work from them as in the past, but it's still a repeat job so helps JS and I've already done about half a day's work. 

 

History is last year this job went very wrong and I was not paid for a large part of it. I think this was due to issues with the former AD, not people there now. What do I do?

 

1. Suck it up

2. Ask for what I want and bow out if I don't get it

3. Negotiate somewhere inbetween

 

Since there is no contract yet, I could bow out without repercussions, unless they can change feedback for old jobs and get me that way --  last worked for them this past December. I guess if I piss them off by asking more I could get negative feedback on this one if I proceed.

 

Thanks, I know I did wrong by starting without funded milestone. I trusted them based on most experiences, the problem last year was an anomaly.

 

 

   

Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
2 of 6

@Jacqueline P wrote:

History is last year this job went very wrong and I was not paid for a large part of it. I think this was due to issues with the former AD, not people there now. What do I do?

 

1. Suck it up

2. Ask for what I want and bow out if I don't get it

3. Negotiate somewhere inbetween


Thanks, I know I did wrong by starting without funded milestone. I trusted them based on most experiences, the problem last year was an anomaly.


 

1. Suck it up

2. Ask for what I want and bow out if I don't get it

3. Negotiate somewhere inbetween

 

2. and 3. are valid options.

I often start working before funding (just don't hand anything over) with trusted clients,  it may well go wrong one day, but it hasn't yet.

You really should have agreed a price before accepting or starting (informally) the work. That's where it went wrong.

 

Was no price mentioned?

 

You could try and play dumb and say something along the lines of

"Hi XYZ, thanks for sending the contract offer over, much appreciated, but there seems to have been a bit of miscommunication regarding the price.  My price would be $ 500 for that. Can we schedule a call / skype conversation / whatever to discuss please?"

and see what happens.

Community Guru
Kathy T Member Since: Jul 17, 2015
3 of 6

Jacqueline - I think the part that's bothering you is that you've already started the job without even a contract or any type of negotiation especially since you stated you were on the fence about whether you wanted to do this job anyway.

 

You also stated that if you stop now, you put the Art Director in a very bad place. How is that when it was your decision to start work without a contract or any type of negotiation? Whether or not the job is updating or formatting or even rewrites, your price to do this is $500.

 

Since this client has a more competent AD now, and you don't get as much work from them AND, for whatever reason, the history last year was that the job went very wrong and you were not paid for a large part of it I would say to keep your price as is.

 

IMO I see all warning signs with proceeding with this job from what you described. But you'll have to decide if this job is worth the low price, negative feedback, and possible more problems as in the past with the possibility of not getting paid even at the lower price.

 

If you decide to accept the contract then stick to your original price. And next time, don't start work until you've negotiated the terms etc., escrow is FULLY funded and of course, until you have a contract.

 

 

Community Guru
Jacqueline P Member Since: Dec 28, 2015
4 of 6

I will have to look at last year's but I think my $500 is the same as for last year if I combine price for inside book and cover, but there was more formatting (original design) needed, I did multiple covers and they chose one, and this time the cover is repurposing an ad the new AD did so much less work. 

 

I think last year's problem was due to person who is no longer there, but that's a guess as two people contributed to the message center, but under one name, I thought it was the same person until one left and the other, who I think does the business part, revealed himself.

Community Guru
Jacqueline P Member Since: Dec 28, 2015
5 of 6

I've decided to accept offer as is. Asking for more now considering their extreme need for help is likely to feel like me taking advantage of the situation. And it seems unethical to bow out at this point. I declined once, and they waited for me -- I let them do that. 

 

My problem with this is due to my ambivilence on this from the get go. 

 

 

Community Guru
Tiffany S Member Since: Jan 15, 2016
6 of 6

Jacqueline, might I suggest that although you accept the offer as-is (which, contrary to others, I think is an honorable option under the circumstances), you mention to your contact that you accepted the offer because you'd started out without nailing down a price and didn't want to leave them hanging, but for future reference your price for this type of job would be $500? 

 

Perhaps they'll be as honorable as you're attempting to be and pay you the $500 or split the difference. Even if they don't, you'll have gently sent the message that price needs to be clarified up front if they send future work your way.

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