I just had a conversation with a colleague about jobbing out work. For years he has been keeping up with the various technologies and coding and a few months ago it had gotten to a point of intolerance. There was a simple job staring at him from the monitor and he falling behind in his refusal to break out of his malaise and start the job. The bulb went on over his head – He had a little extra cash in the budget and called a coder up.
Dude: “I need someone to code this.”
Coder: “I can code it for $100.”
Dude: “I got $75.”
Code: “I can code it for $75.”
In a fit of inspiration dude calls the client.
Dude: “I have to bring in another person. You’ll need to kick in $X to make the difference.”
Client: “Ok. Make it happen.”
That extra money goes to help get the job done and subsidizes the cost of hiring a freelancer. Basic business but it’s an example of work smarter, not harder. Back when he and I were breaking into the industry via the temp agencies, I had gotten wind of the huge amount of money companies were paying for our efforts in relation to the cut that we were receiving. Dot com times allowed some companies to be totally cool with getting gouged. With the global economic plight, it’s easier to find quality cats who will work for rates previously ascribed to the green. It would seem for individuals to act more like companies if they want to expand their horizons. The individual is always primed to be squeezed. It’s just more so during cutthroat times.
Gregorian calendar year 2010: Where was my return on my investments? I shouldn’t have to ask that. All investments should return something tangible or intangible; Meaning, you can’t always know how things will turn but if you’re not interested in the process, that is not the investment for you.
So should I curse a year that brought me to another? Well, I don’t have to be fond of how many things wrapped up. However, I am thoroughly cool with not dragging symbolic sludge into the metaphorical New Year. Like it or not, this is one of the few “holidays” in which I actively take part. There’s no choice. I don’t have to do a top ten list nor swear I’m giving up on living it up. But I have to acknowledge the glimmer of hope that the new integer brings. I have to prep ’11’s arrival with a sense of zeal and momentum. And there’s no reason to bury ’10 quite yet.
Since there is ZERO business in the hopper right now, I’m designing ’11 and ’12s objectives right now. And there’s a mad dash to tie up some lingering projects so I can psyche myself of how successful I was in getting them done. There will be no need to mention the heinous amounts of procrastination involved when that check hits the list. Self-employed = self-motivated. That’s not always the easiest thing to maintain so I’m cool with the stock motivation that crossing the annual finishing line provides.
2011 isn’t going to start out with the ills of its progenitor magically out of its system. It’s going to suck with fangs. Being no fan of the undead, I might as well lace the brass knuckles with garlic and holy water and get ready for the throw down. A former employer suggested that I like to do everything the hard way. I was her go to guy when the impossible needed to be possible. Fortunately, I guess I developed an enjoyment of the perversity of the battle. I need to remember that because I have to be my “go to” now. The fan is about to be buried deeply.
So what’s this babble about? It might be that seasonal carpe diem BS. I’ll take that if I can sustain it. I know I have to relentlessly follow my projects through to their terminus. If I’m going to fight hard for the money and fight for my clients’ projects goal I certainly better have an even more maniacal drive employed on my own behalf. I’ve put a lot of resources into me and now my little boy so I might as well bring the zeal to it. Sounds good to me…