June 18th, 2014

A Job Offer Is Not An Insult

About a month ago my main client decided he wanted to add another writer to the team. He knows nothing about writing but he trusts me. So I put a note on Facebook describing the job and saying it would pay between $15 and $20 an hour based on experience.

A couple minutes later I got a nice message from a woman who has been trying to break into the market my client targets. While she didn't have any samples in that style, I'd seen her writing on Facebook and knew she could write. I recommended her to him and she had the job the next morning.

She was very happy. The client is so happy with her work he gave me a bonus just for sending her his way. I was happy because I'd made the woman and my client happy.

But a lot of people were not happy.

I got a bunch of messages from different people telling me that freelance marketing should pay at least $100 an hour and I was an evil bastard for suggesting that someone might do the work for $15 to $20 an hour. They claimed that by posting the thing on Facebook  I was actually insulting them. Even though I didn't tag them in the post. I just thought that in this economy someone I know might need a  job. And someone did.

Yesterday, I was going through my Facebook feed and saw a freelance writer  post that she was so, so tired of companies offering her $15 an hour jobs. She said she was  incredibly insulted by them. All I could think was "damn, instead of being insulted, why not refer those companies to people who might really need the job?"

Nobody should ever take a job that pays  less than they think they are worth. But, you should always remember that there are people out there who have been looking for writing jobs for months and months and gotten nowhere. Their bank accounts may be running low. You may be able to be insulted by a job offer and still put food on the table. They may not be able to. They may be praying every day for just that job offer that isn't quite good enough for you.

So, don't be insulted by a job offer. Be happy that someone wants to hire you. If you can,  play it forward. See if you can find someone talented who needs that job more than you do.

Karma matters, and someday you may just need the same kind of help keeping a roof over your  head and clothes on your back.