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The proposal as versus the original request

Active Member
Harold H Member Since: Nov 16, 2016
1 of 4

I found an interesting request for proposals in a subject area that I have many years of experience.  However, the details of the request were unrealistic.  As a result, I responded with a proposal in which I clearly avoided committing to any of the details.  Initially, someone else was hired to do the project, however a couple of weeks later, she asked me if I was interested.  I said Yes, and produced the report ontime.  Now, she is asking for me to do the work, that I deliberately excluded from my proposal.


So now I am in dispute with my client for my first Upwork project!  


I consult in my local area (Ottawa Canada), and I know that when a consultant is hired, the proposal becomes the criteria by which a consultants work is judged by when it comes time to be payed.  In fact, there is Canadian case law to back me up.  However, as an Upwork newbie, I may have made a false assumption.  Does she really have the ability to make me do work that is not in my proposal? 



Community Guru
Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
2 of 4

no, she can't make you do anything but it's better to be specific about what you will and won't do so nobody is taken off guard and no assumptions are made cuz it's pretty guaranteed that the client will assume you'll work forever on their project with no extra money.


one of the bigger mistakes people make here is not saying no to bad jobs and taking anything just to get a gig on their profile

Active Member
Harold H Member Since: Nov 16, 2016
3 of 4

Thankyou, that is good to know.


You are right, I probably should not have bid on the project.  Unfortunately, the subject matter is a source of fascination for me.  Still, the Devil is in the details.

Community Guru
Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
4 of 4

Bidding is OK it's just reading the red flags when they start to talk to you.


I just went back and forth with someone that twice tried to sneak in a lower rate and escrow only half. I rejected both times and said "no, escrow it all for this amount or this isn't going to work" I admit when he finally did it I was concerned that he'd screw me later but I figured I could get a certain amount should it go to dispute. Amazingly enough it worked out fine but I'm pretty sure I would have gotten less than half of what I bid had I just accepted what he threw at me without standing my ground.


You gotta set ground rules for yourself. I also have a fee schedule that I stick to and I don't negotiate or lower these fees at all. If anything, they go up not down. Recently had someone argue with me over $20. My rates are my rates and the answer is NO. You start letting people walk all over you and they will. You'll get much more respect if you come off like you know what you're doing and demand certain things rather than just take whatever someone throws at you.


When you allow it, you look desperate and people will smell your desperation and take advantage. Even if you are desperate, you can't show it. Customers want a lot for as little as they can pay, not the other way around. This is just natural and expecting anything else is stupid. But you can leverage your offer as better than anyone else's and earn a living here.