Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Why should I pay you $300 a day when your friend will work for $15/hr?

It's the same old argument, Trade Show after Trade Show.  And I'm finally bent enough to blog about it.

Dear Fellow Co-Workers:

Please STOP doing MY job for $15/hr.  My minimum rate is $300/day to be a Crowd Gatherer, which is approximately $40/hr.  That you are willing to lower not only my standards, but the rest of the Industry's standards to work the SAME job as I do for just over minimum wage is insulting.

True, you might not have the same experience as I do--yet--so you may need to take a job paying $250/day just to get your name out there enough to demand the same pay as I get, but $250/day is three times more than what you are accepting now.  Have some dignity.

Stop it. 

Do you realize how much your booking agency takes from you when you agree to work for $15/hr?  Do the math.  I get $40, you said yes to $15.  They are charging the client the SAME rate.  Do you think you should be the one laughing because you are working and I am not?  NO.  The hiring agency and the client are laughing at YOU because they just got your services for basically nothing.  And now you have to work three times as many days to equal my salary.  So while you are working seven days a week trying to pay your bills, I work three and am putting money in the bank.

You deserve better.  Especially those of you who I refer into this business.

And please don't use the excuse, "I would rather be working for below market rate than not working."  Bullshit. 

  • Would you date a man who beats you or cheats on you just because you don't want to be lonely and dating an abuser is better than not dating?  No.  You would tell that man to get out of your life and come back when he has learned some respect.
  • If a waiter brought your dinner to you in a nice restaurant and it had bugs and hair in it, would you just sit there and eat it?  No.  You would send it back and demand the meal that you are paying for.
  • When you are shoe shopping and like a pair of shoes, do you buy the size 6 that doesn't fit because the store is sold out of your size?  No.  You walk out of the store and go to another that might have the perfect fit.


Let's quickly go over some myths in the business:

  1. It's the slow season, so any work is better than nothing.  No.  There is no "slow season" in marketing.  I am just as busy in January as June.  Be flexible in the jobs you work, and you will always be working.  Note I said the JOBS, not the pay!! 
  2. I'm new in the business so I have to start somewhere.  Wrong.  Would you accept a "regular job" for below minimum wage because you are new?  Nope.  Then don't do it in this business. 
  3. I can work for less than I normally do because they pay in cash right after the gig and it's close to my house.  This one kills me.  A gig is ALWAYS close to SOMEONE'S house, so why are you so special?  And the reason you are paid in cash is so that the company does not have to make a paper trail and report your earnings to the government--saving THEM time and money.  Again, they win and you lose.
You deserve better.  You deserve respect.  And you deserve pay equivalent to your talent.  When you take a job for $15/hr, you tell the world that you have little talent, no respect for yourself, and don't deserve better than what you are getting.

And when it comes time for me to hire you, do you think that I'm going to offer you $300/day when I know I can get you for $15/hr?  Nope.  I might give you $20/hr just so that you feel good about yourself, but I'm still going to be pocketing an extra $100 a day off of your hard work.  And if I can get you to do my job of looking for two other people to work the gig too (because you won't charge me a referral fee), I'll be able to stay home and watch Dr. Phil on TV all day, because you and your friends are making my $300/day rate for me, and I don't have to do a thing.

Think about it.

Here is another good article about why you should just say NO to bad pay:  How To Get Paid What You Are Worth

Life is Good.  At least for me, because I respect myself.  So should you.