[Insider 65] Year in Review Pt. 1
a brave moment, a big disappointment, and a big win.
It has been a great year. This month, I am doing a weekly audit to reflect upon - (1) all that has happened and, (2) all that I have managed to do.
In today’s Insider Post, one brave moment, one big disappointment, and one big win. Also, scroll to the end for this month’s Insider hangout.
My Brave Moment
This summer, I stood up for what I am worth.
I was approached by a local arts council to sketch during an art fair. We had a lovely phone conversation. I spoke about my relevant experience at Jaipur Lit Fest, and shared some ideas for covering their multi-day event. The rep was enthusiastic. Everything sounded great.
Then we came to the fee. Their offer was 10% of what I expected. I nearly laughed out loud when they told me.
This is all we can budget, they explained. But, it will be a great opportunity to -
No, I cut in. I am sorry, but there is no way I will work at that number.
They said they would discuss it further and get back to me. I expected not to hear back. So I was surprised when they emailed a few days later to fix another phone appointment. Over the call, they explained that they understood my situation, and appreciated the quality of my work.
And then they made me the same offer as before.
This time I did laugh out loud. But not because I found it funny. Laughter was the most polite response to how I really felt.
I asked if they would work somewhere for one-tenth of their salary. I asked how they would respond if the same offer were repeated to them with the idea that they should have become desperate enough to accept.
They laughed too. We agreed that the whole thing was ridiculous. I wished them luck finding an artist. They said they would keep in touch if anything suitable turns up in the future. I am not keeping my hopes up.
Why is it so hard?
It is a business decision. It should be straightforward. It is bad business to devalue yourself. It is bad business to sell yourself short. Can you think of a store that would sell something for 1/10th of its asking price? Of course not. Even making such a demand is unthinkable.