by Deborah Ng
As freelancers we know there’s no better feeling than knowing we were chosen to do a job out of dozens, if not hundreds of applicants. Something about our writing styles set us apart from the rest, and that has us walking upon air.
With some writers that pleasure is short-lived. Even though landing the gig is the hard part, they find it tough to keep interested in their assignment. So if you want to turn your clients into repeat clients, and you want the gig to be something steady, it’s best to be on your best behavior, even if the job isn’t as exciting as you anticipated.
First, a story
Once upon a time, there was an up and coming freelance writer and blogger. She worked hard to land gigs and get herself noticed. When she was hired to work for a notable website she was elated. After a few months she was bored to tears and didn’t put her all into the gig. And it showed. Several months later she left said job, as prestigious as it was. When she was on the short list for another great opportunity she asked her former editor for a recommendation. The editor said, “I’m sorry but I can’t do that. I know you have made a name for yourself and people look up to you, but you didn’t put your all into this job. You were late with assignments, missed deadlines and made promises you didn’t keep. Now, you’ll probably get the job having this on your resume, but if I’m asked to recommend you, I can’t do that.”
Whoa. Did that hit home! The freelancer was devastated. Even though she got the job, her former editor’s words stung. She knew there was a note of truth to them. She prided herself on her reputation as a reliable freelancer and mentor of others, but she didn’t put enough of an effort into the boring gig,and it showed. She got lazy and someone called her on it. After that, she made it a point to do the best job possible, even if the work was boring.
The moral of the story? If someone hires you to do a job they’re trusting you to meet deadlines and do the work to the best of your ability, even if it bores you to tears. You’re only as good as your reputation, blow that and no one will hire you.