Let me start by noting the best thing which happened on May – finally I have posted 1, 000 tweets and retweets in about 1.5 years. That’s is like about 2-3 tweets each day. This is an impressive run, I plan to hit 2, 000 tweets before the end of the year. I also plan to triple my followers in the next one year. As at the time of writing this, my followers were 1, 246 and I was following 2, 202. Here is my Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn profiles. Please follow/connect/friend request.
I will be glad to connect with you Let’s be honest, money is a critical to our lives and society. Money and wealth are also a powerful motivator. But being a powerful driving force, I have realized that wealth can tempt even the most morally upright or ethically-concerned in our society. Even the bright kids and the poor kids. While I always try to be a decent lad, I do not call myself the “most” everything. As a child, I always dreamt of being a superhero.
You know that kid who dodges a bullet or has a silver bullet to everything. But I cannot claim that superiority now. I’m a dejected grown up kid who is always catching up with things in life. I’ve had enough frustrations in life. Unlike kids who have their destinies clearly cut when they are born, my life has been marked with episodes of struggles but also successes. Nonetheless, most often, I’m always catching up with my dreams.
Therefore, when Satan as I will explain came asking that I name my price because he wanted to hire me I could not almost turn away the offer. And so if not for anything I needed money and I nearly worked for him or one of his representative because I thought that was in a lifetime opportunity.
As most of you will note, I’m an online worker and specifically I do Content Writing, Social Media Management and Forex Trading. As a result, most often I’m always online. And so the devil and his agents approached me online. Their ask was like “Are you interested in doing a website and social media strategy for us?”
I mean I mistook his representatives as normal clients who always approach me online. When they approached me online, even though I was quite hesitant, the offer was too good to resists. Well, no one wants to start out with the intention of selling their soul.
I mean everyone wants the best for themselves and when you finally land a freelance job you think of how you can milk your client.
The client asked if I would be interested in setting up a simple adult WordPress website with a minimal theme. They wanted to know that if I would make it a little appealing by “sprucing it up”. And I said “Yes” I mean that was easy to do. I just needed to hire someone to do it for me. In my own thinking what they were asking for was all that I was used to. The price was about five times what I charge my clients.
After spending some time rationalizing about how I could do this project, I thought that I’ would ask for just a small fee of $2000. You see without a job, this is a significant amount. And the client had no objection because he was ready to actually pay more. The job was to create an adult site and I reasoned that I lived in a different country. Particularly, this time I was working from my remote suburb in Nairobi city. I live in a secluded house and often even my immediate neighbor does not know what I’m doing.
The Falling Apart
It was easy to say YES to the offer. I would take the client’s money (which, at the time, I could have lived on for several months), and spend it in the local economy. I therefore, kept rationalizing that the money would have some good both to me and the local economy. However, everything fell through when I came back to be my senses.
I realized that no amount of money was worth my sense of integrity. Even though my integrity was continuously forming as I continue to grow, I would have no self-respect to speak about, if I had fallen for this offer by this client. However, I must say that the deal fell apart by a mare chance.
The client asked for a sample site I had before and I willingly refereed him to a site I had hired someone to create for me. To verify that it was one of my portfolio, the client asked that I prove and I showed him some conversations I had had with the client. It was this professional mistake that made the deal to fall apart.
The website had been done to a small business customer for less than $200 who wanted his first business up and running. Generally, small business websites are much lower and therefore, the client noted this and he asked why the price discrepancy which to them was unfair. Because I could not answer this, the deal did not go through.
I realized how lucky I was to have worked with a client from hell after everything fell through. If I did not work for the client, perhaps I would have hated myself for it for a long time. If I had never worked with the client, I would perhaps have never had got an experience working with such difficult clients.
My learnings were that you need to stick to your principles and formal agreements with clients. Such work often help you define your principles. Moreover, it gives you an opportunity to see how far you are willing to bend them.
From the experience, I realized that I needed to develop a stricter personal code. As a beginner, I realized that it is possible to betray your principles for money. Life always have a way of testing our limits and if your integrity is cheap, you are most likely going to give in.
One of the things I have in life almost working for Satan is that in whatever job you have, get out and meet people. I have learnt that content are the most valuable resource you will have when you need a new job or when you need to expand your business.
When anyone asks you for help or contact when networking, make sure to give it. Do not love to be a secret worker I no longer think learning as just joining college for a Masters’ program as showing that I’m a lifelong learner.
Learning takes place anywhere and when you actually join college for a postgraduate program, you need more time and fewer responsibilities. Just before graduating, I had planned to go for a Masters’ program before I was 25. This never happened and then I promised myself to do a Masters in Communications/Public Relations/International Business/Psychology last year. It did not also materialize. But hoping this year I will finally enroll for a masters.
One of the things I have learnt as I waited to go back to graduate school was that my interests have completely changed. Just before college I wanted to just join college for MBA or Management Information Systems. I’m no longer interested in these programs. I also learnt that every industry including freelancing world has its ups and downs.
If you are unlucky, you are likely to get caught in a down cycle. It will not be fun but if you are prepared well, you will get another job faster. Lastly, I also know that even though I’m a good and smart kid with lots of talent, I need to always take a deep breath and enjoy myself. This helps one to relax and be fine even when things are not going as I expected.