“Free” Time [Time, Part 10]

People think that freelancers have all this “FREE TIME” to frivolously throw away on things that enhance the handout-asker’s career and does nothing at all of value for the freelancer.

It’s like they think the word freelance equates to “Never works much” like as if we’re hanging out on the beach every day with an umbrella-drink in our hands watching girls surf all day. It makes perfect sense that we’d rather work for you for free, right? 😀 Continue reading ““Free” Time [Time, Part 10]”

Three Fingers in a Dyke

The legend of the brave Dutch boy – by others thought to be named Hans Brinker – who supposedly put his finger in the dyke to prevent a flood, was actually a literary invention by the American writer Mary Elizabeth Mapes Dodge (1831-1905), who was born in New York.”

I’ve been thinking about this story lately, because it’s all well and good if you can save the town by placing one finger in a dyke. Depending on which finger you use, you can still do a lot of stuff while you wait for help to arrive. You can play guitar. You can text someone on your g1. You can hold a knife and fork and eat dinner if someone brings you the food…..

Bill & Sandra

However, things become more of a problem FOR YOU if you have to put TWO fingers in the dyke to stop the flood. It gets obviously worse if you have to put THREE fingers in the dyke, because now, you effectively only have one hand left to do what YOU have to do until help arrives to properly plug the holes and you can go about your business.
 
This is what happens to you when people JACK THEMSELVES UP and then ask YOU to get them out of it. People just LOVE to paint themselves into corners that they can’t possibly get out of on their own and then beg someone else to solve their incredible problem for them. On top of that, they still want to haggle with you as if YOU’RE the one with the problem and not THEM. They explain the issue to you, you inform them of what you CAN do and how long it’s going to take you and then they want to know how cheaply you can do it for them.
 
How about if it costs you ZERO and you DO. IT. YOURSELF? How about that? Meanwhile, I’ll have a brew, eat some pizza and kick it with some chicks and enjoy my time while you’re busy FAILING. Oh… That doesn’t sound good to you? That means we’re talking about regular rates PLUS “rush” rates. It’s a fascinating combination of amusing & annoying when people are in dire straits (the predicament, not the band) and they want to haggle over the price of a seat in the lifeboat while the Titanic’s sinking. My ship isn’t sinking. Yours is. Hope you can swim! *waves goodbye* Continue reading “Three Fingers in a Dyke”

Time, Part 03: “Office Hours”

Continued from “Time, Business & Handouts [Time, Part 1]” and “Time, Part 02”

Liz Copic & Bill CammackOne of the by-products of this startup culture we live in is that people don’t know when to buzz the %*^& off.

I know this because I’ve been living that lifestyle for a couple of years now. The only thing that matters is that the job isn’t finished yet. Whatever you have to do to finish it and however long it takes, that’s what you need (and to a masochistic degree, WANT) to do.

No. I do not want to go out for a drink with you. I want to implement a new feature on my site. Going out with you is a waste of my time, *AND* it’s just pushing me further back in finishing the project that’s bringing me an actual ROI in the future.

The other day, I was awake @ 3 am and I thought about something I needed to talk to some company about. I looked their number up on the web and called them. I was actually ANNOYED at the fact that I was going to have to wait until maybe 7 am to speak to them! hahaha THE NERVE!!!

That’s the life we live. “There are four hours until I can do what I want to do”, as opposed to “You know what? Just because I’m awake and functional doesn’t mean anybody else IS or NEEDS TO BE”.

Social Media

All this connectivity makes it even worse. There are too many ways for people to monitor your online presence and think they have an opportunity to grab at your time. You ignore their phone calls and they text you. You ignore their texts and they email you. You ignore their emails and they call your other phone. You ignore their voicemail and the look for you on Facebook… or MySpace or AIM/iChat or Twitter or Pownce or Jaiku or on your website or in Ning communities or in forums or bulletin boards…….

It would be laughable if it weren’t so utterly pathetic. 🙂 It’s like they’re going “How dare he post on Twitter when he didn’t return any of my calls? :O” “How dare he go out partying and post 35 pictures on the net when my project deadline is coming up? :O” Well… That’s just the thing. It’s *YOUR* deadline until you pay me to make it MY business at all. MY job is to have a good time. Period. If I elect to stop having a good time and help you accomplish YOUR goals in return for some of your money, then that’s business. Other than that, anything I tell you that helps you out is. a. FAVOR.

Another thing about this is that just because you see me on Twitter @ 4 am, that doesn’t mean I’m interested in or willing to discuss ANYTHING about your business with you. This isn’t the help desk. This isn’t live customer support from India. If I can help out and choose to, good for you. If I choose not to, that’s how it went. Continue reading “Time, Part 03: “Office Hours””