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NDAS and samples

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Community Guru
Miriam H Member Since: May 16, 2017
1 of 9

As I do a lot of business plans and strategic writing, my work is under NDA - which is clearly stated in my profile.

 

Today I had a prospective client ask me to change the names and send a 1 page sample, I said no. 

 

I completely  appreciate the client point of view, but curious what others think .

Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
2 of 9

You have no portfolio and absolutely should have some.

Just create some items yourself - it does not have to be anything you did for a client.

 

Personally I would not hire a creative person without a portfolio. I am fairly certain you lose a bunch of business not having a portfolio / samples.

 

Community Guru
Miriam H Member Since: May 16, 2017
3 of 9

@petra

I don't consider myself creative, I'm a business and strategy editor.  Interesting, would like to hear from other business writers. 

Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
4 of 9

Miriam H wrote:

@petra

I don't consider myself creative, I'm a business and strategy editor.  Interesting, would like to hear from other business writers. 


So how do you expect prospective clients to be able to tell if you can write and how you write if you have no samples?

Oh sorry, I missed that I am clearly not qualified to have an opinion... I do aplogize and will crawl back into my corner.

 

 

Community Guru
Miriam H Member Since: May 16, 2017
5 of 9

Petra R wrote:


So how do you expect prospective clients to be able to tell if you can write and how you write if you have no samples?

Oh sorry, I missed that I am clearly not qualified to have an opinion... I do aplogize and will crawl back into my corner.

 

 


Snark much? From my point of view there is a difference b/t a writer and an editor. In addition, I work with clients very incrementally and on an hourly contract generally provide a first pass in less than 2 hours. That's a very low investment for a client to see if we are a fit. 

 

 

 

 

Community Guru
Scott B Member Since: Nov 20, 2015
BEST ANSWER
6 of 9

I understand both points here. The client really just wants to get a sense of your work and of course you have an obligation to protect your client's IP. Changing the names would not be enough for me either. I don't know how often you come across this or think you might, but perhaps you can find another way to come up with a sample for perhaps a fictitious company. This is something you write once and use whenever you are asked. Seems like perhaps the best approach to satisfy a potential client's need to see something tangible from you without compromising another client's actual paid for work product.

Community Guru
Miriam H Member Since: May 16, 2017
7 of 9

Scott B wrote:

I understand both points here. The client really just wants to get a sense of your work and of course you have an obligation to protect your client's IP. Changing the names would not be enough for me either. I don't know how often you come across this or think you might, but perhaps you can find another way to come up with a sample for perhaps a fictitious company. This is something you write once and use whenever you are asked. Seems like perhaps the best approach to satisfy a potential client's need to see something tangible from you without compromising another client's actual paid for work product.


Scott, I really appreciate this suggestion and will take some time to create one and add it to my portfolio!

 

 

Community Leader
Michelle S Member Since: Jun 23, 2017
8 of 9

Most of my work is also under NDA.  I never let any of my potential clients see any of it. Sometimes I will talk in vagues terms about it in an interview, but never enough specifics to let the potential client know who the other client is, what the specific products were or what specific outcomes of research were.  My other clients own those outcomes and they are not mine to share.  I always have this issue even with my own personal porfolio or jobs that I apply for in-person.  I only have released products in my portfolio.  Luckily, I was a student for a really long time and have a lot of published research that is out there for me to use in my Upwork porfolio.  I also use work that I have had to do specifically for interveiws (basically tests) that I feel the company that hired me (or did not) does not own because it was not a real research project done under NDA.

 

Overall though, it's not really been a problem for me.  I think that if I were in the position of having absolutey no samples I would certainly make something up.  I would even run a survey about something I was interested in, pay participants and write up a report based on those results just to show that I knew what I was talking about.  This is the advice that is often given to designers and researchers who cannot show their work to future employers.  I'm currently doing work under multiple NDAs here on Upwork.  You'll just have to figure out how to work around it.  Lots of other people are in the same position and companies who require NDAs are usually very understanding of this predicament as they are also asking you to not share their work.

Community Guru
Mary W Member Since: Nov 10, 2014
9 of 9

As a paralegal, all of my work is under NDAs and also HIPPA.  My clients have been kind enough to allow me to "John Doe" the patients and edit out the medical facilities so that I can have a couple of examples posted.  

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